According to a recent report by Bloomberg, Verizon has been courting both YouTube TV and Apple TV for a partnership as the company’s next generation Verizon 5G network creeps toward becoming a reality.
Because the competition offers bundled services, including live television service, it seemed that the company would need its own bundle to stay afloat. Unfortunately, Verizon was unable to find success with its own online television service. The next best thing might just be a really good partnership.
The plan is to have an internet television bundle ready to deploy when the 5G Verizon network starts to be marketed to homes in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Houston and other cities this fall. Having a partner like Google TV already in place means that Verizon will be able to compete on a more level playing field with AT&T, a company that is trying very hard to dominate the 5G story.
If You Can’t Beat ‘Em (or Buy ‘Em)…
Verizon already gave an online television service a try once, spending about $900 million trying very hard to get Verizon Go90 up and running.
At some point, Verizon realized that this particular ship was simply hemorrhaging money, largely because the intended teenage demographic didn’t really care about it. Go90 is now a sad victim of mistargeting and teenage angst. It has been integrated into Oath, Verizon’s umbrella for acquisitions that include Yahoo! and AOL.
Aside from the unfortunate Go90 saga, things have been pretty much business as usual. Verizon’s second quarter earnings report was pretty basic. It had claimed 531,000 new subscribers, 199,000 of those being mobile phone users. All the gauges looked fine, with growth, profitability and revenue within expectations. Verizon was not an exciting company during the second quarter and that’s always pretty fantastic news.
With that kind of stability, Verizon can afford to pour most of its energy into building out the infrastructure required for its 5G network. Now that the company is no longer diverting focus to build content, since a video partner like YouTube TV will handle those details, Verizon can focus on building a great system for its users, no matter where they might be.
By the end of 2020, 5G should be available nationwide to every kind of device imaginable.
Oh, the Possibilities of a 5G Network!
As marketers, it’s easy to dismiss this kind of technology as something that’s not really related to the industry.
The truth is that faster communications and better wireless networks affect everyone. Emerging tech is changing the way that Americans live. Some of it has been quite useless, but a lot of it has been really good and has helped marketers find the right audience at the right time. Higher ROI isn’t everything, but it is a desirable thing.
Have you considered what 5G can really do?
Here are a few potentials:
Create totally wireless offices with super fast network speeds. Tired of waiting for those metrics to download? 5G networks run at speeds in the two gigabit per second range, which is a pretty impressive upgrade to the Internet’s average speed of 55 megabits per second.
You’ll be able to download files faster and stream with incredible clarity, since your office neetwork won’t be constantly lagging.
Live stream in Ultra HD. Video technology is getting cleaner and clearer all the time, but with all that clarity comes bulkier files, creating a serious risk of buffering. It’s hard to convince someone to buy your product or call now if you’re constantly stopping and going on the consumer side.
Those same customers could even video call your office in brilliant 4K. Verizon already offers lower resolution video calling between its customers, but with 5G it would be like being there in person. Your marketing presentation just got clear enough to let your telecommute.
Immerse customers in VR worlds. Virtual reality has always held a lot of potential for people who are selling just about anything.
After all, you could theoretically create a virtual shop or demonstration that shows the buyer, in real time, exactly what’s involved in their purchase. From fashion accessories to sporting goods or even bigger buys like cars and houses, VR is a tool with a lot of places to go. The problem it has always suffered from was a lack of bandwidth, keeping it in the realm of novelty and not moving it to the status of a real marketing tool. Speeds like what seem to be possible on 5G would easily carry the signal.
Today, the idea of Verizon’s 5G network and its choosing to partner with an established television provider might not seem like much, but a few years down the road it could have been the moment that everything started to change. So many doors have opened to marketers since the Internet became a thing, more bandwidth means more room for imagination and innovation.