Light Reading

Telefónica: Tu Me Has Got To Go

Sarah Thomas
8/7/2013
50%
50%

Telefónica's Digital division is pulling the plug on its over-the-top voice and SMS service, Tu Me, instead focusing all its efforts on its cross-platform communications app, Tu Go.

The operator confirmed Tu Me's shuttering on Wednesday and let its users know service would end on Sept. 8. This time last year, Telefónica reported having more than 600,000 active users for the service.

Jamie Finn, who leads Telefónica's OTT efforts, says it's abandoning the service in order to really focus on Tu Go, its newer app that lets users send texts or make voice or video calls from any device, including their tablet or PC.

"We are doubling down on Tu Go since it only makes sense to focus on what is working and our customers are asking for every day," Finn writes in an email to Light Reading, adding that it had to prioritize Tu Go "based on the operator's not unlimited engineering resources."

The logic makes sense as Tu Go has been successful for the operator and extends its core communications services rather than offers an alternative to them. It's been a way for Telefónica to keep customers loyal by increasing the value of their service. (See Et Tu, Telefónica?)

There is, however, another very clear reason Tu Me is getting the boot. Most mobile users are already well entrenched in their communications app of choice. If they aren't using traditional voice and SMS, they have a favorite OTT app. Just today, WhatsApp revealed it has hit 300 million monthly active users, sending 11 billion messages and receiving 20 billion messages per day. Luring those users back to an operator-offered service was never going to be easy, even if it's free.

Tu Go fills an actual need in the marketplace, however. As I've mentioned before, divorcing the device from the communications service makes a lot of sense. As with email, when it syncs across all screens, it is markedly easier to use. There's no service cannibalization risk and no alternative app that's going to be easier than a native one. (See Texting & The Phone Get Divorced .)

It is disappointing to see Tu Me shut down. We've often praised Telefónica as an operator that seems to "get it" when it comes to OTT in the past. But I do think it was the right move. And I'd add that it does support Telefónica Digital's mantra of exploring new services, seeing what sticks and ditching what doesn't -- acting like a startup, basically. As Finn says, they learned a lot from Tu Me that will now help with Tu Go, so it wasn't a failure. It's a smart business strategy and, for Telefónica, this appears to be the right decision.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(3)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
mendyk
50%
50%
mendyk,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/9/2013 | 1:32:32 PM
re: Telefónica: Tu Me Has Got To Go
I'm sure the users who have the plug pulled on them are thrilled with the audacity.
Ray Le Maistre
50%
50%
Ray Le Maistre,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/8/2013 | 9:36:22 AM
re: Telefónica: Tu Me Has Got To Go
And WhatsApp has just added a voice messaging service too....

http://blog.whatsapp.com/index...
Ray Le Maistre
50%
50%
Ray Le Maistre,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/8/2013 | 9:25:21 AM
re: Telefónica: Tu Me Has Got To Go
You've got to hand it to Telefonica -- as pointed out in this blog, to launch a service, attract a user base and then pull the plug about a year later to focus on something else that is working better goes totally against the normal behaviour patterns of a telco. Does that count as a cultural success for Telefonica Digital?
More Blogs from Que Sera Sarah
Mosaik's latest US maps paint a picture of where wireless operators have strong low-band spectrum footprints and where there's still a long way to go.
The founder of the GIG and the first female salesperson at Sony shares her advice on carving your own path, being bold and creating a gender intelligent company.
Join us in Dallas as we discuss how to build a positive company culture at Light Reading's next Women in Comms breakfast on Sept. 16 ahead of NFV Everywhere.
As president of Partner Solutions for AT&T, McCorcle has helped transform how the organization works with enterprises, but also how it advocates for women in the industry.
Streaming video company says both new moms and dad can take unlimited parental leave, up to one year, without sacrificing pay.
From The Founder
Against the odds, Huawei is growing its telecoms networking equipment business in the US -- that should be ringing some alarm bells for domestic vendors.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
CLOUD / MANAGED SERVICES: Prepping Ethernet for the Cloud
Moderator: Ray LeMaistre Panelists: Jeremy Bye, Leonard Sheahan
Between the CEOs
Metaswitch's New CEO Martin Lund Discusses His Role

9|2|15   |   11:27   |   (3) comments


Technology industry veteran Martin Lund joins Metaswitch Networks this week as the company's new CEO. In this interview, Lund discusses his new role and the industry's progress with Light Reading CEO Steve Saunders. Lund believes that the industry disruption caused by SDN and NFV is creating opportunities for companies like Metaswitch – network software providers ...
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Nominum on Leveraging the Power of DNS to Deliver Superior Subscriber Experiences

9|2|15   |   07:13   |   (0) comments


Nominum CEO Gary Messiana talks about the challenges service providers face in competing for a much more sophisticated customer, a customer that has heightened expectations for more personalized and compelling digital experiences. Providers are focusing their efforts on delivering higher value subscriber services, retaining their existing customers and increasing ...
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Jeff Miller, ActiveVideo

8|28|15   |   19:05   |   (0) comments


Jeff Miller, President and CEO of ActiveVideo, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the impact of virtualization on the TV and video distribution market.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Vodafone: Mobile Money Is About Customer Trust

8|27|15   |   06.36   |   (0) comments


Light Reading spoke with Vodafone's Ian Ravenscroft about the unique responsibilities and opportunities facing operators handling customers' financial transactions over the network.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Palo Alto Networks on Expanding in the Carrier/Service Provider Market

8|26|15   |   07:54   |   (0) comments


Alfred Lee from Palo Alto Networks tells Steve Saunders about their new chassis-based system, the PA-7080, and how it can benefit service providers compared to legacy firewalls.
LRTV Custom TV
Global Services Forum Preview

8|25|15   |   02:36   |   (0) comments


Light Reading's CEO and Founder Steve Saunders talks about Huawei's upcoming Global Services Forum with the help of Heavy Reading's Patrick Donegan and Teresa Mastrangelo.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Infoblox on DNS Threat Index

8|19|15   |   04:39   |   (0) comments


Dilip Pillaipakam from Infoblox talks to Steve Saunders about his company's core network services.
Between the CEOs
CEO Chat With Ihab Tarazi, Equinix

8|14|15   |   20:18   |   (1) comment


Equinix CTO Ihab Tarazi talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the dramatic changes in the data center, cloud and interconnect markets and discusses the impact of SDN and NFV in the coming years.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
The Netformx Ecosystem

8|14|15   |   09:39   |   (1) comment


Ittai Bareket, CEO of Netformx, talks with Steve Saunders about the Netformx Ecosystem, which employs cutting-edge prescriptive analytics to help solution providers maximize profits.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Versa Networks on Leveraging VNFs

8|12|15   |   07:37   |   (0) comments


Kumar Mehta, founder and CEO of stealth mode startup Versa Networks, talks with Steve Saunders about how providers can best leverage virtualized network functions (VNFs).
LRTV Custom TV
Transforming the Network Through OPNFV

8|5|15   |   7:09   |   (0) comments


Sandra Rivera, VP Data Center Group; GM Network Platforms Group, Intel Corporation, on OPNFV Arno and how the industry is coming together to accelerate the deployment of NFV and transform the network.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei ONS Product Demo

8|3|15   |   6:01   |   (0) comments


Huawei shows at Open Networking Summit 2015 in Santa Clara how its SDN and NFV solutions embrace openness.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 16, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
November 17, 2015, Santa Clara, California
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Cisco's cloud and virtualization portfolio can increase business agility and innovation by building a more flexible network architecture.
Hot Topics
T-Mobile CEO Plays Data Traffic Cop
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 8/31/2015
CEO Chat With Bill Gates
Steve Saunders, CEO and founder, Light Reading, 8/31/2015
Time to Monetize Cable WiFi
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 8/31/2015
Carolina Town Becomes First US 10-Gig City
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 9/3/2015
Eurobites: Anite in OSS Tie-Up With Nokia
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 9/4/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
September 22, 2015
Media Begins With “Me”
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Technology industry veteran Martin Lund joins Metaswitch Networks this week as the company's new CEO. In this interview, Lund discusses his new role and the industry's progress with Light Reading CEO Steve Saunders. Lund believes that the industry disruption caused by SDN and NFV is creating opportunities for companies like Metaswitch – network software providers with the agility to embrace new technologies quickly and the ability to deliver on substantial projects for global network operators.
The scene: Last Saturday, lunchtime, the interior of a shi-shi-foo-foo eatery in Manhattan's SoHo district.
Cats with Phones
It's a New Age... Click Here
When smartphones replace stuffed animals.