Commoditization drives deflation. As data access becomes faster and more commoditized, this same data is dragging down lucrative markets such as telephony and cable subscriptions with it.
TelCos are facing a tough future; one in which their core services (TV & phone packages) can often be delivered cheaper and better by the others piggybacking on their data lines. Unless the TelCos can change the market dynamics through new forms of bundled services, they are going to become as blah as the local water company.
And this is great news for consumers.
- AT&T signaled that they are heading away from "minutes" based packages in mobile.
- Netflix is reportedly in talks with cable carriers to offer a bundled subscription packages.
- Comcast announced a new Broadband+HBO pacakge that will include Xfinity and does not require a cable TV subscription.
- TMobile launched an iPad plan that gives away the first 200 mb of use each month.
Personally, I'm most impressed with Comcast and TMobile.
Comcast is effectively unbundling their television offerings, finally giving consumers what they have long been clamoring for.
TMobile on the other hand, is differentiating themselves from a commodoty market while capturing early adopters on a high usage product. The super high res displays on the new iPads will suck down data at incredible speeds. Giving away 200 mb a month amounts to giving away free emal access in a market where few will be satisfied with email access alone. These 200 mb have become the razor and the paid data packages the blades. Brilliant.
These times, they are a changing.