What if you could just switch operators by “bumping” 2 phones. So if I’m with operator A and really like and want a friend to join, why not just bump the phones.
Ok, agreed, maybe this is not possible today and there are a lot of issues related to it: you need to sign a contract, transfer or change of mobile number, somehow the payment needs to be cleared, termination of the old contract.
But, if you could actually manage this within your backend processes the world suddenly looks different: very limited acquisition cost, acquisition by recommendation, leveraging social networks.
And this example shows the disadvantage telecom operators today have above Internet companies like facebook, twitter, etc. This kind of recommendations/social network scaling is very difficult and expensive to achieve.