The days of being frugal with cell phone minutes are pretty much behind us, but data is a whole other topic. People protect their bandwidth tooth and nail. Here’s an interesting perspective on why sharing might make a ton of sense.
Internet access for all would benefit society at large; so much so that individuals should be able to share it as they see fit. That was the takeaway from a panel discussing the future of mobile networking at the GigaOM Mobilize 2013 event on Thursday. Unfortunately, that’s not how the traditional network operators provide access, so what can the industry do?
Plenty, actually, provided that people have incentives and easy ways to share their mobile broadband. Steven van Wel, CEO of Karma, said not to think of this as sharing bandwidth but rather, sharing access to the internet. That’s exactly what his company provides: A hotspot that provides internet access to others nearby. And the more a customer shares their hotspot access, the more free data they get in return.