There’s an article titled Separating network and communications infrastructure up at telco revolutions. I happened across the article during some random wandering, but it sums up exactly how I think about providers. Check this out:

Organisations should stop searching for killer applications. Instead, they should seek killer business cases that treat networks as an independent resource that is fundamental to developing value-add as well as open standard communications applications while lowering infrastructure total cost of ownership.

Right on. I’ve said things like that before, but I apply the principles to telcom service providers and not just ITOs. I think the argument extends quite well. It’s the end-to-end principle applied to business models. Making the nodes of a network smart is not very good for the network itself. It’s better to keep the internal parts of a network dumb and to put all the logic at the edges. It’s why I think telecoms trying to “move up the value chain” with respect to providing data services is a bad idea.