Hesse said that more carriers should embrace such services and initiatives to make their customers feel that their carrier has their back and will take guarding their personal data seriously. Data privacy has become a major issue over the last couple of years, as companies such as Google and Facebook have been engulfed in controversies surrounding how they use their customers' data.
"I focus intensely on our reputation because the future of our industry is personalization," he said. "The question is, whom will customers trust to provide these services? The real issue here is who is collecting their information and what are the values that are held by those companies."
Kevin McGinnis, Sprint's vice president of product platforms and services, also picked up on Hesse's themes during a private chat with Network World this week. He pointed out that Sprint's Guardian package not only included applications to manage users' smartphone data but also to manage their entire families' mobile security and safety. Among other things, the Guardian family safety bundle gives users the ability to whitelist and blacklist numbers across their family's devices, allows for tracking of family members by sending out certain checkpoints revealing their locations at certain times during the day, and that lets users see whom their children are contacting.
"We want to make sure that we're doing the right thing for customers in security, safety and privacy," he said. "It's no longer about carriers and over-the-top players, it's about how we manage these issues together. We want to make sure that we don't stifle things because customer trust starts to wane."
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