Recently I wrote about Facebook and why the company should scare carriers as they take over the customer relationship and moreover commoditize wireless providers by developing people-to-people connectivity applications which run on any carrier network. As of today the wireless carrier still has the ability to one-up Facebook in terms of adding functionality which may not be accessible to the social networking giant. Areas such as device integration and presence are the domain of the carrier for now and if they don't act quickly they may be bypassed entirely as the keeper of the customer relationship.
Shubh Agarwal the Director of Product Marketing & Partnerships at Mavenir Systems had a conversation with me recently which was enlightening as it included a truly useful demo of their products which play in the IMS space. You see IMS is esoteric and sophisticated and by developing a shiny new Android-based application which can show the true power of their solutions they have enticed carriers to engage in considering their mobile social networking platform which will soon integrate with the common social networking platforms on the market.
Shubh explained how the service can handle automated call control and moreover integrate buddy lists into corporate directories ensuring for example the new accountant can immediately be connected with her peers.
They are working on a project in Germany where they blend presence into the calendar application ensuring calls go to an admin or voicemail when you are in a meeting.
Other areas of interest he is seeing is a presence-enabled feature-duplicate of a traditional switchboard, low powered Picocell presence enablement and 4-digit dialing which he tells me is popular in Europe.
Shubh shows off the rich communications suite -- the next generation of mobile messaging
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He hinted at a connected home system complete with carrier presence being rolled out in the US next year. As you might have guessed they are hoping their platform is to be the backbone of such an offering. All in all things seem to be getting better in IMS as he says carriers are looking for new ways to take advantage of LTE and Asian competition has brought the prices of IMS down to a more palatable level.