Telco Partnerships with Content Providers Buoy Cord-Cutting Culture

, Sep 19, 2017

CATEGORIES: Tech & Innovation
TAGS: , ,

Unlimited plans have saturated the market, leading to escalating pricing wars and, consequently, many customers saying that they don’t actually need unlimited data in the first place. Why pay for unlimited if you’re really only using data to stream Netflix and YouTube videos?

Telcos are catching on that consumers want choice, and just as importantly, they want perks. More and more, major providers are differentiating themselves by partnering with content providers to offer customers special benefits.

To that end, T-Mobile recently announced a new perk called “Netflix On Us.” Through an exclusive partnership with Netflix, as of September 12 all T-Mobile ONE family plans now come with a Netflix subscription – at no additional charge. Not only do customers gain access to the entire Netflix library, but they also get free mobile Netflix streaming.

“Netflix On Us” builds on other T-Mobile streaming offerings, like “Binge On” and “Music Freedom,” which allow customers to stream select music and video at no additional cost. But, the Netflix announcement moves a step forward by incorporating a standard Netflix subscription, without upping the cost of your data plan.

Not to be outdone, AT&T quickly responded by announcing that they’re expanding free HBO access and streaming to all of its Unlimited Choice customers, starting September 15. That means unlimited Game of Thrones binging, no matter where you are, without having to worry about using up your data plan or remembering your roommate’s sister’s boyfriend’s dad’s password.

For what it’s worth, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam doesn’t seem too worried. In an interview with CNBC, McAdam stressed that Verizon cares more about the quality of its network than bonus add-ons. McAdam’s bet may pay off, but with rumors already floating about Verizon seeking a similar partnership, they may have simply been late to the game on this one.

Offerings like free subscriptions and unlimited video streaming are by and large aimed at attracting a younger crowd that doesn’t want to be encumbered by traditional cable. For customers who have already cut the cord, these kinds of offers put money back in their pocket ($9.99/month for Netflix’s standard plan, or $15/month for HBO Now), making mobile networks like T-Mobile and AT&T even more appealing. And, for customers considering ditching their cable box, this may just be the extra push they needed.

March’s team of mobile and telecom experts aligns with what’s happening next in the industry to help providers across the globe make a major impact. With an eye on the constantly evolving storylines and trends, March has the expertise telcos need to tell their story.