Our first interesting bit of news to come out of CTIA this year is the first morning keynote speech. It didn't have a specific title, but this keynote did focus on the current state of things in the cellphone industry and where it is evolving in the future. The primary speaker for this keynote was, Patrick Riordan, the President and CEO of a company called Cellcom (out of Wisconsin). The secondary speaker was Julius Genachowski of the FCC. There were several things that were discussed during the keynote that point to a better future for wireless service. Here's a quick summary of highlights:
- CellCom is working closely with wireless carriers and the FCC to improve wireless security - One of the interesting highlights of this was an increasing focus on making sure that all cell devices have remote wipe and lock functionality.
- CellCom is also working to help carriers reduce what they called, "Bill Shock" - This is when a customer has an overage (either data, texting or talking) and are suddenly slammed with an exorbitant bill - CellCom is pushing and assisting the industry to institute policies and programs that will facilitate better communication with their customers before "bill shock" occurs.
- CellCom is also working with companies and the FCC to push for increasing the available spectrum across the industry to help increase the proliferation of cell phone tech - They are also working to help speed up the build up of cell phone towers - an interesting factoid was revealed in the keynote that there are now more people in the world with cellphones than there are people with electricity and running water (not sure how that is possible)
- CellCom is also encouraging greater competition with the different carriers - specifically they are working to improve the competition for better data packages and family plans
Finally, CellCom wasn't the only speaker at this keynote. Gary Flood of Mastercard came forward and shared that they are pushing their NFC style payments, PayPass, which is similar to Google Wallet. They are developing an app that shares all your Mastercard info in one convenient and easy to use place on your smartphone. They estimated that by 2015, all handsets will be NFC capable, and they want to be a big part of that mobile payment pie.
That's if for this initial CTIA story. Stay tuned for even more exciting stuff, including pictures of new and exciting devices displayed at CTIA!
P.S. - Thanks go out to "cereal killer" for covering this event and bringing us the details!