Back in the early 19th century, the public debut of George Stephenson’s Rocket steam engine was a harbinger of the Age of Steam, which applied the technologies of the industrial revolution to transport with great success. Funded by eager speculators, railway infrastructure soon expanded across the world and eventually usurped canals as the main form of transportation.
Going into 2013, the communications industry will continue its campaign to be the enabler of critical functions for cities and public services. These are challenging markets that demand patient investment. Administrative systems and working practices – not to mention public policy and regulation – take time to adapt to connected environments. Citizens and consumers also need time to understand their more proactive role.
In a blow to operators’ ambitions for the telehealth market, results from the world’s largest randomised trial have cast doubt on the cost benefits of managing long-term conditions at home. The UK’s Whole System Demonstrator (WSD) program monitored the progress of 3,230 people with diabetes, pulmonary disease or heart failure over the course of 12 months from 2008-9. In the first of five peer-reviewed evaluations just published, academics from the Nuffield Trust and eight universities conclude that the reduction in hospital admission costs is “not significant”.
Ever passed the time on a plane journey trying to think of new objects that could conceivably join the growing Internet of Things? These days, the flight would be short for the game to be worthwhile – there aren’t so many devices left that someone, somewhere isn’t already connecting.
MWC 2012 in Barcelona was the venue for the Group of 5’s (G5) response to the OTT threat with the launch of RCS-5. Though Vodafone’s stand nearly collapsed under the weight of anticipation – and had to be evacuated – the new brand ‘Joyn’ and OEM relationships largely confirmed expectations of the carriers’ commitment to take on the OTT players.