Telecoms Tech News magazine published an interesting article recently on whether quad-play could take off in the UK. Quad-play describes the bundling of various services that telcos typically offer – allowing customers to buy their TV, Internet, home phone, and mobile phone all with a single bill.
The intention is to lock customers in to the bundled service for a longer time, reducing churn and in return for this loyalty offering a better deal than would be possible if the services were all purchased separately.
Quad-play has yet to take off in the UK. The only big operator with a serious offering is Virgin, though others – like Talk Talk – are entering the market and seeing what happens. In the USA, all the major telcos have a quad-play offering and consumers can score great discounts by shopping around and getting all their Internet and home media requirements from a single supplier.
Most commentators have been talking about a need to drop prices and innovate on services – to create new services that the consumer didn’t realise they needed. However, I believe that the real story with the growth of quad-play in the UK will be how collaborative the telcos can be.
As I have mentioned in a few recent blogs, I believe that we will start to see more telcos working together, considering that the basic network infrastructure is not worth competing over and therefore helping each other to ensure the basics are in place. They will then compete on other areas, such as great original content or the best customer service in the industry.
The BT-EE collaboration over consumer mobile services is one example of this, but I believe there will be many more examples of these companies getting together and bundling their services, allowing many more options for quad-play offerings to grow.
What do you think of quad-play in the UK? Is it too early to see where it might go or have you already subscribed to a package? Leave a comment here or tweet me on @simondillsworth.
Photo by Len Matthews licensed under Creative Commons