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Development of advanced mobile internet services requires flexible service platforms. Every service offering needs generic functionalities like security, billing and customer data management. Such functionalities used to be integrated in the mobile network infrastructure but are now offered by competing service platforms. Service platforms can still be offered by operators but can also be embedded in the mobile phone or at systems of the service providers. Studying flexibility of service platforms requires technological as well as strategic analysis, and should take into account the perspective of multiple stakeholders. Where to locate service platforms is not just a technological matter as it greatly influences flexibility of both service providers and end-users. This paper analyzes how various service platform technologies that are located at operators, mobile phone and service providers enable or limit flexibility to both service providers and end-users.
Date of Conference: 11-14 Oct. 2010