11/06 ISPcon Santa ClaraAt ISPCon today in Santa Clara, and guess what? The wifi rocks. ISPs might be struggling to find business models under the weight of the carriers, but man do they know how to network a joint.

Interesting that a great many ISPs have found success as MSPs (managed service providers) focusing on the boom in hosting, managed apps and software as a service, most of which is coming from the Web 2.0 drive (the general growth of web apps). Access is dead or dying in the US market as it continues to commoditize, and the models of bundling and media distribution once touted as the saviors for carriage are being shredded. Over time access providers will be forced to strip everything back to just the value they have (the physical infrastructure) and nothing more. The real big producers (Google, Fox, News) are the ones that will dominate the content channels, and the great triple play (something I’ve never been a big believer of) has failed to deliver much more than a minor convenience of everything on one bill.

The future of the ISP/MSP isn’t so bleak: they just need to focus on servicing their markets real need: getting on, staying on and using the internet.

2 comments so far

  1. Glenn Vassallo on

    Interesting to hear that the ISPs are benefiting from the growth of software as a service. Were there many focusing on hosting apps that are delivered via xml web services model? I’m thinking there are going to be some key differences in the infrastructure needs, due to a number of factors.

    Many of the managed apps and software as a service players are very much islands of their own. From what I have read about Tangler, I think you will agree the real power of the web will come when there are 1000s of apps that easily play nice with each other. This will lead to a proliferation of mash ups and specialised apps like nothing we have seen before.

  2. Martin Wells on

    Actually they were not that concerned about the type of services they delivered. To them it was more CPU, RAM, Rack Space and bandwidth.

    The 1000’s of apps is a nice dream. Lots of discussion lately about how that will happen: openID to solve identity, microformats for cross service data transport. Not sure on what will drive that need though — if it has to come from developers only it’ll be slow.

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