How carriers can innovate in the superphone era

Voice revenues are shrinking for mobile carriers, networks are approaching capacity and the rising cost of handset subsidies is eating into profits. And while U.S. consumption of mobile data is up 89 percent, according to recent figures from Nielsen, the price of data has dropped 46 percent per megabyte over the past year.

There has never been a more challenging time for mobile carriers, but opportunities still abound for those willing to embrace new business models and innovative services. Carriers could differentiate their messaging services, for instance, by overhauling traditional voicemail and developing more-sophisticated offerings that integrate voice messaging with other forms of communication. For more thoughts on how carriers can better monetize mobile data and avoid becoming simple access providers, please see my weekly update at GigaOM Pro (subscription required).