The IT industry has always had an 'if we build it, they will come' attitude. And usually it proves to be right, in a way.
The same will be true of 3G. Much hinges on the quest for a so-called killer app that will drive demand. The woods are thick with companies that think they have it, but the rest of us have yet to be convinced.
At the moment the only thing that inspires us to buy one of the clunky new 3G handsets is if someone else ponies up most of the dough.
When the app comes it will surprise everyone in the industry, but that's nothing new. Science fiction writer William Gibson once wrote that "the street has its own uses for technology", and it's from those streets that the answers will come.
When Bell invented the phonograph he drew up a list of 10 uses that this new invention could be sold to perform. They ranged from recording the dictation of secretaries to keeping the last words of the dying for posterity. Playing music on one wasn't considered until some years later.
In the 1970s pagers were de rigueur among drug dealers two decades before the devices entered politicians' pockets.
And SMS was originally a phone toolkit and diagnostic application that no one dreamt would drive huge revenue growth for operators. Their efforts to develop SMS with multimedia messaging services have been less successful.
Whatever happens, 3G services are going to become increasingly widespread.
Telecoms companies caught up in the mobile gold rush paid so much money for the licences that they can't avoid building the networks. The failure to use a licence would be like dumping a bucket of blood in the water for the sharks at the Stock Exchange.
But beyond that, nothing is certain. Mobile phones themselves are likely to be used on the network initially but they won't be the only devices we'll use to access the mobile bandwidth.
As time goes on and the technology matures we're going to see a huge range of devices; technological Darwinism gone mad as new ideas are tried and discarded.
One of them will strike a chord with enough people and we'll be off. We don't yet know what it will be, but brace yourself for a wild ride.
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