Discussion on Iridium

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Competitive Attribute Program ¡V Iridium Mobile Satellite System Project The ability to capture values along the Technology Adoption Lifecycle determines not just how successful a firm will be, but whether it will create competitive advantage through technology. Businesses with large fixed costs, capital-intensive business plans, and specialized asset bases will face the challenge to maintain its strategic continuity because it is generally prohibitively expensive to change direction to response to any conceivable structural change. Iridium, a satellite mobile system which cost $5 billion to build, began to provide commercial telephone service on November 1 1998. This paper aims to use the Iridium Project, which I have participated at Motorola before, to illustrate the incremental benefits and the pitfalls from creating competitive advantage through technology and activity system. Discussion of incremental benefits & industry analysis by using five force model Competitor ¡V Mobile Satellite System (MSS) companies

The largest competitor from MSS companies is Globalstar. Globalstar¡¦s communication system is supported by low cost satellites which enhance the possibility for Globalstar to implement a comparatively lower pricing strategy than Iridium. Although Globalstar has simpler and cheaper satellites than Iridium owns, it requires ground switching systems for effective connections. In return, the coverage of Globalstar system was restricted to land locations. This form of benchmarking activities within Iridium helps to formulate the strategic position and get to know a better reinforcement of strategic fit. Substitutes ¡V Ground-Based Wireless Services

In 1990s, ground-based wireless phone service grew rapidly around the world. A key factor in the growth of wireless phones was the adoption of a single standard, known as GSM, in Europe and parts of Asia. There were 480 million cellular subscribers worldwide by January 2000 and it reached more than billions...
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