The Next Frontier: Consumer Electronic Devices with Cellular Connections

In a seeming nod to the potential of an open access network for consumer devices, Verizon has announced that it will start to focus more on connectivity of consumer electronic devices similar to what Sprint announced with its XOHM plans.

Verizon will allow any device that meets minimum technical standards to access Verizon’s CDMA network. If you recall from an earlier post on WiMAX with Sprint, this is what Sprint proposed to do. Both companies are excited about the prospect of high speed wireless connections to all type of devices and the prospect of the minutes of use that would come with those connections.

Recently, Amazon announced its Kindle e-book reader which uses the Sprint EVDO network (CDMA initially) to download books to the reader. In this situation, Amazon has worked out an arrangement with Sprint to pay for the network usage rather than the end user. It is easy to foresee future devices where the minutes of use cost is absorbed by the device provider.

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