Who needs a moat when you can just erect a huge wall?
This philosophy has long permeated the wireless Internet services market in the United States. Carriers such as AT&T
Seeing what a great deal this is for the carriers, Chinese wireless providers China Mobile
The strategy helps keep wireless carriers from simply becoming a "dumb pipe" that would only charge blindly for mobile traffic to sites such as KongZhong
Since many of the independent content aggregators make a significant portion of their revenue from advertising, a drop in traffic ties in directly with drop in revenue. Other companies on the losing end of the equation -- but to a lesser degree -- are SINA
This trend reminds investors that the power in the mobile value chain ultimately resides with the carrier -- the one with the direct face to the customer. Without a strong brand and alternative channels to sell content, aggregators in China's mobile market will continue to struggle against this great wall.
For more Foolishness:Dave Mock has contemplated a great wall in his garden to keep snails out. He owns no shares of companies mentioned here. He is the author of The Qualcomm Equation. Vodafone is an Inside Value recommendation. SINA is a Stock Advisor pick. The Fool's disclosure policy scales walls faster than a spring monkey on Red Bull.