Look for the cable guys to get a little more aggressive adding wireless to service packages. After selling spectrum to Verizon Comcast and Time Warner entered into agreements to sell wireless products that will utilize V’s network. Customers connected via Clear’s network will be transitioned to Verizon, ending the Clearwire partnership.
While this will be a big revenue hit for cash burning Clearwire, it also frees it from the product and price restrictions the cable guys had imposed. Unfortunately Clearwire, it’s probably too late to take advantage of this new freedom even if it’s management was up to the task. I expect for Clearwire will go bust early next year with Sprint absorbing most of its assets and customer base.
The new Verizon arrangement does give the cable guys tremendous opportunity to innovate and disrupt. I don’t expect we’ll see much of either. Cable management tends to drive looking through the rear view mirror. Nothing that could be seen as a threat to the walled garden pay TV package will ever see the light of day. Only monopolies can survive doing business this way.
As for Verizon, look for more deals like this one. While quality of service has much more to do with tower density and backhaul, Verizon and AT&T are on a quest to lock up all available spectrum. Unless they control virtually all spectrum, their broken wireless business model can’t be sustained.