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I remember years ago when the only way to connect to the internet was by dial-up and how i would hit “redial” over and over again, each time with a bit more force hoping that my emphatic press of the enter button would be felt by someone (as if there was a little leprechaun on the other side of the line) and connect me to the internet over the rest of the users trying to dial in.

The mobile industry and innovation within the mobile market in the States has exploded and yet the infrastructure has yet to catch up with the needs of  mobile users.  Innovation within this space is like a superfast locomotive traveling on train tracks from the 1800’s. I wonder if the mobile carriers focus more of their attention on how to generate new revenue streams rather than focus on expanding their infrastructure to keep up with the ever growing needs of their current and potential customers.

Different US metropolitan cities are feeling a lack of  mobile infrastructure for mobile data.  The iPhone entered the market and drastically changed the playing field.  This device changed the way users  explore the internet by encouraging mobile applications for different online activities. The increase in the phone’s popularity coupled with the explosion of applications for the iPhone has crippled the AT&T infrastructure in cities that have a predominant mass using this device.

And this is just going to get worse. According to the latest Mary Meeker report 2009 is the year of mobile internet growth and it is just going to continue to expand.

New phones are entering the market that are built to be mini-computers. Every major carrier in the States is going to have to deal with the infrastructure issue and fast. Users are unable to cope with the lack of connectivity. Infrastructure for data and connectivity is going to cost money .

John Stratton, Verizon Wireless’s marketing chief  was quoted in a recently WSJ article titled  “The Coming Mobile Meltdown” saying he  “recently assured an interviewer that the mobile net would be open to all kinds of devices and uses. But he also predicted “a higher emphasis on usage-based billing, where if you consume more of the network, you pay more.”

I predict that if the mobile  infrastructure does not grow fast enough for consumers, innovators are going to create a solution cutting out the mobile carriers altogether. And then where will they be? Extinct.

(Image Courtesy of Zinkwazi )