IDC has appointed Glen Saunders as its senior telecommunications analyst in New Zealand following the departure of Rosalie Nelson and Rosemary Spragg to Chorus.
Saunders, who started in his new role last week, was previously senior market intelligence manager at Telecom Retail. Prior to that he was a senior policy analyst at the Ministry of Economic Development, working on the then Labour government’s Digital Strategy.
Saunders says the New Zealand telecommunications market is entering a “post regulatory state”.
“It’s almost like you’ve had the rules read out of the game and now it's time to decide what to do, where you invest your money and what services you offer,” he says.
At Telecom Saunders was responsible for market and competitive intelligence in the mobile marketing area, with a special interest in the CDMA migration. He says that New Zealand consumers are only now beginning to get to grips with smartphones.
“New Zealanders will start understanding what smartphones are about, there’s a lot of talk around app discovery. I think the general public, they might be aware of Angry Birds, but outside of that they need to start to understand how apps work, why you should use them and why you should pay for data.”
When asked if Telecom would need to shed staff in order to remain competitive, Saunders acknowledged there had been plenty of talk in the industry about possible down-sizing.
“It’s a worldwide thing... their core revenues are all flattening out,” he says. “To maintain a world where your costs are rising and your revenues aren’t matching that there has to be a focus on cost management and spending your capital wisely as well.”
He says the telcos will have to work on increasing demand for their services and that there will be a lot of “non-traditional influences outside the industry that will start driving the propositions that companies put to consumers”. These include offers such as MySky and Xbox Live being incorporated into broadband plans.
Saunders also suggests there will be more convergence between mobile and fixed broadband offers.
IDC country manager Ullrich Loeffler says the company is still looking to fill the role of research manager telecommunications and hopes to make an appointment over the next weeks.