Knock Knock jokes for telecoms ..

A bit of fun but with some serious insights I hope

Modelled on the Knock Knock jokes .. I used the following at a private talk for a customer to illustruate the many gaps in perception I see in the industry

Although I use ‘Operator’ here the same ideas to apply to others in the telecoms industry

An interaction between a Telecom Operator and a Customer
Knock knock
who is there?
Telecom Operator
Customer: What do you want to know?
Operator: How many appstores do you need?
Customer: You mean apps .. not appstores .. yes?
Operator: No. I mean how many app stores do you need?
Customer: Silence ..
Operator(again) .. How many appstores do you need?
Customer: Silence ..
Operator: Why dont you answer? How many appstores do you need?

Why no answer from the customer?

Have you ever seen a customer ask this question?
It is a question for the industry. Makes no difference to the customer. Customers like apps not appstores. Appstores are an industry abstraction ..

An interaction between a Telecom Operator and the Web
Knock knock
Operator: who is there?
The Web
Operator: The web who?
The Web: What do you mean .. web who .. there is only one web ..
Operator: But I mean .. Is it Google, Is it skype? Is it foursquare? Is it twitter? Is it facebook?

Skype is not the Web. Nor is twitter.

The point is: When the telecoms industry says ‘Web’ they REALLY mean ‘Over the top’ (services that use the telecoms network to deliver content but are agnostic – and often competing – to the network itself. Skype is probably the best example) . In doing so, they muddle up their own competitive positioning because the view of Over the top is really Telecoms centric. No one outside telecoms cares for it ..


  1. Dotbernd says:

    All wrong, this artical is prove that the guy does not know what he is talking about.
    First of all, yes, telcos like to make mony – I hope nothing wrong with that. But what does the author suppose the mony to invest into ever faster networks is coming from? If operators are just pid-pipes that make the Web happen by selling chep Web access to customers they won’t have the mony to invest in infrastructure.
    And secondly, the WAC initiative is prove that telcos have an open Web in mind where everybody can offer services, including the telcos.

  2. Christian says:

    Wow, I don’t know where you live but the telcos there must be quite thick! I’d love the challenge to rework their product groups!

    I’ve been working for telcos in Canada for 10 years now and we never used any of these concepts in the way portrayed.

  3. ajit says:

    Christan, Dotbernd
    Thanks for your comments. Firstly, this was a bit of fun! But on a more serious note, ‘how many appstores’ is one of the most common qs from telcos. And my answer is the same as above. The ‘web’ is an observation. I have seen too many people from telecoms refer to Skype and Twitter as the ‘web’ – when they really mean OTT. The blog is a bit on the Dilbert theme – a bit of sarcasm – based on reality kind rgds Ajit