2017 predictions: Westcoast head of mobile Darren Seward

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Westcoast head of mobile Darren Seward tells Mobile News his thoughts on what might happen this year, including drastic change to mobile contracts and a massive tip for dealers

I believe in 2017 we will see a further move towards the uncoupling of airtime and devices. This is being driven by the increasing cost of premium smartphones from the likes of Apple and Samsung together with the launch of new MNVO offerings from companies such as Sky.

This will continue to drive new financing and trade-in propositions across both consumer and business. As this trend gathers pace, the value distribution can offer to the channel will grow in importance.

An area that dealers should be paying attention to is Connected Home. This emerging technology will give customers a reason to keep talking to their customers. Consumers tend to start small and then build out their solution – smart thermostats, lighting, audio and security.

Big companies such as Amazon, Google, Apple and British Gas are all fighting to be the central hub to all this technology. Internet of Things will continue to gather pace with the operators trying to establish their part in the value chain.

In the B2B arena we will see a further convergence of mobile, fixed line and broadband driven by cloud based solutions. In addition, upcoming changes to data protection regulations will require dealers to become skilled up in selling security and device management solutions.

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