Just a few short years ago, T-Mobile US was crashing and burning. Then they brought in new CEO John Legere and he breathed life back into the tired lungs. His “Un-carrier” strategy seems to be working. The company has been growing thanks to his unorthodox ways of doing business. Now they are moving into wireless pay TV and the question is simple: can T-Mobile US’ Un-carrier strategy keep growing?
According to their recent quarterly numbers, they are still growing, but that growth is slowing. When that happens, CEO’s often head in new directions looking for continued growth to keep shareholders happy.
This may be the reason for T-Mobile interest in expanding beyond wireless toward mobile TV. To avoid shareholder pressure and show continue growth. Legere says they simply want to move into a new market segment. So, which is correct? Perhaps it’s a little of both.
Will pay TV help T-Mobile continue growing?
So, the real question today is can John Legere make lightning strike twice? Can he add wireless pay TV to their wireless story and continue to show Un-carrier growth?
Whatever the motivation, I think we should brace ourselves. No doubt, we can expect to see more of his competitive strategy of trying to tear the skin off his competitors. Verizon Wireless, AT&T Mobility and Sprint have all been in the bullseye of his strategy in the past.
Now it looks like Comcast Xfinity Mobile and the coming wireless service from Charter Spectrum are his new targets. He has already launched the first salvo last week.
This may sound strange, but I get the feeling he sees all his competitors like piñata’s hanging in front of him as he is blindfolded and swings the bat trying to slam them letting candy, or in this case market share, rain down on T-Mobile.
T-Mobile has lots of wireless, pay TV companies to compete with
T-Mobile is not the first wireless carrier to go into wireless mobile TV. It started a year or two ago with AT&T DirecTV NOW offering television on their DirecTV smartphone app or tablet app over the AT&T Mobility network. AT&T’s success in this area is causing Verizon Wireless to follow them.
At the same time, we are now also seeing the cable television world like Comcast Xfinity and Charter Spectrum jumping in and moving toward wireless. Of course, their strategy is different from Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint. They are not aggressively trying to win market share. What they are trying to do is lock in their customer base with multiple services. And if you look at Comcast Xfinity Mobile, they seem to be successful at that.
What this means is all the industries heavy-hitters are all moving in the same wireless and pay TV direction. That is a big competitive challenge for T-Mobile as they enter this space later this year.
We don’t yet know what their pay TV offering will look like, and we probably won’t know till later this year. Will it be a winning move? Will it win them market share? Will it move the needle industry wide or just help them stabilize their customer base?
There are the questions we will be trying to answer as they move into this new space. T-Mobile has already been offering a kind of pay TV for a while, and while it works, it has not really rocked the industry.
So, right now your guess is as good as mine. We will just have to wait and see. Good luck T-Mobile on entering the new and increasingly crowded wireless pay TV space. I hope you do well. The next step is up to you. We’ll be watching.