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Verizon's 2-Door Proposal Leads To The Same Old Closed Networks
Speaking yesterday at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, Verizon's executive VP for public policy, Thomas Tauke, said Verizon is pushing for a so-called two-door policy where customers can either choose an unlocked device or a locked device that's subsidized by the carriers. Well, Monty Hall, tell us what's be
Speaking yesterday at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, Verizon's executive VP for public policy, Thomas Tauke, said Verizon is pushing for a so-called two-door policy where customers can either choose an unlocked device or a locked device that's subsidized by the carriers. Well, Monty Hall, tell us what's behind Verizon's new two-door policy?I'll tell you what's behind Verizon's two-door policy: It's same old goat of locked down networks and walled gardens. And if Verizon gets its way, there could be goats behind both of these doors.
Verizon Wireless is lobbying the FCC to create a run-around for the upcoming auction of 700 MHz wireless spectrum. Under the rules the commission set earlier this year, wireless carriers would have to offer more open network access, including rules that will requires carriers to offer devices that can be used on other carrier networks.
Verizon is positioning its two-door policy as a compromise that gives consumers choice. Consumers can choose more expensive open devices or cheaper locked devices. Simple, right?
Not so. The two-door policy is designed to let the carriers continue to offer the same locked-down, subsidized devices under their existing business models. Verizon (and the rest of the carriers) hope that consumers will continue to lock themselves down to long, two-year contracts (two-year contracts, two-doors -- coincidence?) in exchange for cheaper devices that are as locked down as today's cell phones. Verizon is betting that consumers will opt away from unlocked devices (which are generally more expensive) to stick with cheaper phones. In short, Verizon hopes to play a shell game with consumers, deceiving them with devices that look cheaper on the surface, but underneath are saddled with the same locked features and walled content gardens.
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