Amp'd Mobile, a mobile virtual network operator, has filed for Chapter 11, saying it couldn't expand its infrastructure quickly enough to meet demand.
But some bloggers have questioned that rationale. Amp'd is one of several MVNOs that have struggled to find a footing in the US market. MVNOs offer cellular service by leasing space on the networks of larger competitors, offering their own billing and marketing. Many of them tout special features that are added on top of the standard mobile service; Amp'd offers streaming audio and video, among other services.
Amp'd has done a good bit of advertising, but may not have had the user base to needed to back things up; reports say the company only has around 200,000 subscribers.
Blog community response:
"Let's face it, MVNO's in this country don't make it regardless of how sexy they may look on the surface. Too much me too, not enough me different."
"Say what you will about the week business models of Web 2.0, they typically are able to substain themselves. Whereas hardware, networking and wireless companies have a much bigger chance of flaming out."
"I'm not all that surprised, especially given the crazy amounts they've spent on advertising when compared to their relatively low 200,000 subscriber count. Was their mobile multimedia focus ahead of its time, or just not in line with consumer tastes?"