Light Reading

Cox/Verizon Bundles Storm South

Alan Breznick
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Stretching their joint coverage further, Cox Communicationsand Verizon Wirelessare teaming up to sell cable/mobile service packages in the southeastern U.S.

The two companies announced that they are extending the reach of their cable/mobile bundles to Cox's Gulf Coast region, which takes in the Florida Panhandle and South Louisiana. As a result, qualified customers in those areas can now buy Cox video, broadband and home phone services and Verizon Wireless smartphones, tablets and mobile service from either provider.

As an incentive for signing up, Verizon Wireless and Cox are pitching pre-paid Visa debit cards worth up to $100 apiece, depending on the service level taken. The partners are offering a range of service options, including 4G LTE wireless service from Verizon.

The two partners are focusing most of their initial sales efforts on the retail outlets they already have in the MSO's Gulf Coast service area. Verizon Wireless runs 15 stores in the area while Cox maintains nine stores.

Why This Matters
With the addition of the Gulf Coast markets, Cox and Verizon Wireless are now selling cable/mobile bundles throughout many, if not most, of the MSO's markets around the U.S. Previously, the partners rolled out the bundles in Phoenix, Las Vegas, Oklahoma City, Tulsa, San Diego, Santa Barbara and other parts of California, among other areas. (See Verizon Wireless & Cable Keep Rolling.)

Cox is thus following in the footsteps of Comcast Corp.and Time Warner Cable, which have already rolled out bundles with Verizon Wireless throughout much of the U.S. In addition, a fourth large MSO, Bright House Networks, is packaging cable/mobile bundles with the wireless carrier. (See Verizon Wireless & Bright House Start Bundling.)

The moves all follow the four MSOs' sale of their Advanced Wireless Spectrum (AWS) to Verizon Wireless for a total of nearly $4 billion in December 2011.

What we're still waiting to see is how much these heavily promoted bundles are paying off for the four MSOs and Verizon Wireless. None of the five partners has yet revealed much about how many subscribers they've gained with the packages or what kind of revenues they're generating. But we'll keep an eye on all that and keep you posted.

— Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading

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