Cox launches mobile business, joining Comcast, Charter, Altice

In this example image, the Cox Communications logo is displayed on a cell phone.

Rafael Henrique SOPA Picture | LightRocket | Getty Images

Cox Communications is ringing in the new year with the official launch of its mobile business.

The cable and internet giant plans to announce the launch of Cox Mobile on Thursday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Cox follows his friends Comcast, Journalist Communication and Altice USAwhich started offering mobile services to their customers years ago and have been adding customers at a fast clip.

Like Comcast and Charter services, Cox Mobile will be available only to new and existing customers. Cox has 7 million customers in 18 states, and has slowly started offering mobile service in more markets in recent months.

Cable operators began offering mobile service in hopes of giving consumers another reason not to ditch their broadband plans. This is true now more than ever, as the revenue for these businesses is increasing.

Cable companies no longer have pay TV customers opting for broadcast-only services, although that has accelerated recently. However, the growth of social media players has increased in recent quarters as competition has increased and user activity has weakened. right because the housing market is slowing down.

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“I think now they’re using cable again as a way to boost their telecommunications business. There’s not a lot of revenue in it, but that’s not their concern. The concern is is holding on to mobile consumers,” said John Hodulik, an analyst at UBS.

What is the level of competition

Although the wireless companies are interested AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile owning the largest number of wireless customers in the US, Comcast and Charter’s mobile operators are growing at a rapid rate due to cheaper and more flexible plans.

Charter’s Spectrum Mobile offers $30 unlimited data, or $14 per gigabyte of internet usage per month plan. Similarly, Comcast’s Xfinity Mobile starts at $30 for unlimited data, or $15 per gigabyte.

Cheaper options stem from their ability to rely heavily on home Wi-Fi connections and hotspots for data access. When their mobile customers leave Wi-Fi and rely on a network, they are left with the cable company’s business – Verizon for Comcast and Charter – still gives the wireless company a piece of the pie.

Cox Mobile will offer similar plans, either for $45 per month or $15 per gig. Cox also announced the use of Verizon as its network partner, which the company hopes to confirm on Thursday.

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A sign was sent to Cox’s plans to launch its mobile business when T-Mobile sued the company in 2021, saying that Cox should form a partnership with them. Earlier this year, it was reported that a Delaware court ruled in Cox’s favor.

Charter said it had 4.7 million wireless customers as of Sept. 30, while Comcast said it had reached 5 million.

“We started with this mobile service again because we know that customers will spend a lot of time on Wi-Fi,” said Danny Bowman, the mobile operator at Charter, adding Spectrum Mobile customers spend 85% of their time on Wi-Fi. Fig.

“By simplifying the mobile package, we increase growth,” added Bowman. Charter and Comcast also allow customers to bring their own devices, an option Cox does not offer. Currently, customers must purchase Samsung phones through Cox for the service.

‘We have to do this’

Small business owners are also seeing the value of offering a mobile plan to customers.

The National Content and Technology Cooperative, or NCTC, an industry group of more than 700 cable and broadband providers, is negotiating to create a mobile offering for its members.

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“It’s become a center. What everyone seems to think is what you have to have,” NCTC President Lou Borrelli said of mobile offerings. “I see it’s called the new package, I don’t dispute that.”

Because NCTC’s membership includes small service providers – mostly in rural areas – the cooperative began discussions with wireless operators last year on its behalf. whole place.

Borrelli said the NCTC wasn’t in a rush to offer cell phone until it saw how Charter and Comcast did with network additions in 2021. “I remember getting calls from some of our board members. saying, ‘You know, maybe we should look at this. ,'” he said.

The NCTC negotiations should be completed this year, said Borrelli. Some have added cell phones. Colorado-based OH! Internet, Cable & Telephone announced a mobile plan in July through a partnership with Reach Mobile.

According to Borrelli, consumer research in some markets showed that companies have no choice in the matter. “The members say they don’t care what the outcome is, we have to do this.”

Note: Comcast is the parent company of NBCUniversal, which owns CNBC.


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