New T-Mobile US service built on acquisition of Layer3 TV
In an increasingly consolidated wireless/pay TV marketplace, T-Mobile US is throwing its hat into the ring with the Wednesday announcement that it will acquire Denver-based Layer3 TV, and, in 2018, offer up a combined mobile/home subscription-based TV service.
As consumers cut the cord and turn to over the top TV offerings like Netflix and Hulu, communications service providers have turned their attention to the TV space with AT&T acquiring DirecTV and working on a deal to buy Time Warner, and Verizon offering its Fios TV service. Even Google, on the back of its Google Fiber broadband service, has a television play.
In a conference call, T-Mobile US CEO John Legere said the move represents the “next phase of T-Mobile’s strategy for mobile video,” and builds on its BingeOn zero-rating offering, as well as its inclusion of Netflix in family mobile plans. “There’s no industry that needs Un-carrier-ing more than TV,” he said, citing high levels of customer dissatisfaction with traditional satellite and cable providers.
“Consumers are fed up, but big cable has held them hostage,” he continued, adding that big cable companies provide the “worst customer service on the planet–maybe all planets. Why does big cable treat people like this? One simple reason–because they can, because customers don’t havea choice. We’re going to bring real choice to this industry once and for all.”
T-Mobile US COO Mike Sievert said, “All content and communications are transitioning to the internet and the internet itself is going mobile,” as wireless, wireline and cable convergence continues. “The mobile internet is the internet,” he said, adding that with the advent of 5G, “convergence will massively accelerate. We will be ready.”
“We’re not going to leave you in the wilds of the internet forced to MacGyver together your own stack of unrelated OTT services with a dozen different subscriptions, log-ins and ways to discover content. We’re going to build TV for the mobile age.”
Layer3 TV was founded in 2013 with the goal of combining television, social and digital life, according to the company. The company offers service in five cities, and boasts a unique user interface.