Telecom giant AT&T isn’t wasting any time pushing out new deals after its DirecTV acquisition, which closed last week. The company will begin offering the first nationwide package of TV and wireless services with a single bill (and special discounts) on August 10.
Specifically, AT&T will offer HD and DVR service for up to four TVs, along with unlimited talk and text for four wireless lines and 10 GB of shareable wireless data for $200 a month. That’s a savings of at least $600 in the first year alone, according to the company.
Brad Bentley, EVP and chief marketing officer of AT&T Entertainment and Internet Services, called the announcement “the first of many planned moves.” AT&T plans to “deliver more TV and entertainment choices to more screens -- when and where our customers want it” for stronger value with integrated packages, he said.
Wasting No Time
As part of the August launch -- which will see the company sell DirecTV in over 2,000 retail stores around the nation -- AT&T will give subscribers access to DirecTV programming on their mobile devices through the DirecTV app even before the TV service is installed at their homes.
“AT&T is wasting no time extending the benefits of its DirecTV acquisition to consumers,” said Roger Entner, principal analyst at Recon Analytics. “With this newly integrated offer, it’s clear AT&T is focused on offering value on top of convenience to win new customers and become a leader in entertainment and communications.”
The All in One plans let customers choose from several DirecTV plans or U-verse TV plans. Pricing starts at $50 and runs as high as $125 for the Premiere package. Customers can add wireless services with 10 GB of shareable data and unlimited talk and text for four phone lines for $160 per month.
Customers who combine TV and eligible wireless services on the same AT&T bill can each get a $10 discount. On top of that, DirecTV and U-verse TV customers who switch to AT&T wireless from other providers each get a $300 bill credit when they trade in their eligible smartphones against the purchase of new smartphones on AT&T Next.
This Is Just the Beginning
AT&T didn’t stop there. The company is also giving customers the option to add high-speed Internet services with prices starting at $30 a month for speeds up to 6 Mbps and $50 a month for speeds up to 45 Mbps.
We asked Jeff Kagan, an independent technology analyst, for his take on the new deal. He told us this type of bundle is exactly what AT&T’s acquisition of DirecTV was all about and called the new offerings “exciting.”
“This is a new and innovative approach to the television space. I have been waiting for this kind of move from the industry for the last few years,” said Kagan. “It took an acquisition by AT&T to make this dream a reality.”
The standalone industry segments like television, wireless, telephone and Internet are “so yesterday,” Kagan said. Going forward, it will be all about a blended service -- getting more services from one company on one bill, he added.
“Customers will be able to choose the bundle that best fits their needs,” Kagan said. “This is the way the industry should have been growing all along. And I also expect more innovative ideas as time goes by. I think this is just the beginning.”
Posted: 2015-08-03 @ 3:49pm PT
Such services consolidation from one provider reduces the prospect of price competition over time.
The purchase of Direct TV by AT&T should drive AT&T to offer a greater variety of offerings from Direct TV than are currently available.