We’ve been hearing more and more about 5G wireless pay TV, but when will it come to market? It started several years ago when the wireless world was all about 4G. AT&T DirecTV NOW started the whole ball rolling. Verizon seeing the success of AT&T, said they would follow. Then T-Mobile jumped in with Layer3 a year ago. So, let’s take a closer look at where we are today, what we can expect and when.
Since AT&T DirecTV NOW already started offering wireless TV a year or two ago in the 4G marketplace, we can see how this slice of the pay TV pie has already been started. As we move to 5G it will just allow them to offer more services and higher speeds. It’s the next, natural state the industry is moving toward.
Wireless pay TV will grow with 5G
5G is brand spanking new and in my opinion is set to turn this start-up of a wireless TV industry into a rapidly growing one with lots of new competitors. This new technology will grow the wireless pay TV space to a level we have not yet seen. Exciting days are coming to this space.
I expect new competitive pressure to be brought to bear not only from existing players, but from new ones as well. Some will jump in early. Others will jump in later. Still others won’t jump in at all.
On the cable TV side that could include Comcast Xfinity, Charter Spectrum, Altice and more. On the telephone and wireless side that could mean companies like AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, C Spire Wireless, CenturyLink and more. There are also others like Amazon.com, Netflix, HULU and more. Plus, there will be plenty of newcomers to the space.
Xfinity, Spectrum, Altice, AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, CenturyLink
I believe we will see some existing pay TV providers move into the wireless pay TV space in waves. The early wave of these are considered the early adopters. They want to expand their reach and they want to protect their customer base. Whatever the reason, we will see more competitors jump into this space in coming years.
In recent years, there are also so many new competitors in the pay TV space like YouTube, HULU, Microsoft, Google and so many others. They offer different types of pay TV and they are re-defining the marketplace into a pie with slices.
Over the next several years, increasingly we will see some of these make their new television services available wirelessly.
There will be early adopters or leaders. Then there will be followers. There will also be companies who don’t follow this change wave. As always, the early adopters steer the direction of the new industry. The followers jump in next. Both stay with the growth wave or change wave and continue to grow.
Plus, I expect to see loads of new and smaller competitors enter the space. Then over the next several years the industry will move to the next gear. A huge consolidation wave will transform the industry with loads of smaller competitors to a few, larger, national competitors.
Pay TV industry of tomorrow will look very different
What we will end up with is a pay TV industry that looks very different from today. It already looks very different from ten years ago, and over the next decade will continue to transform itself in many different ways like offering IPTV and pay television over wired and wireless networks.
The user will be able to choose the kind of service they want. They will sign up for a service that delivers pay TV to the televisions in the home or office over the wire line network or the wireless network. Users will also be able to get television over their smartphones, tablets and computers, anywhere in the United States, at any time.
Expect dramatic change wave to transform pay TV industry
Expect this pay TV change wave will sweep across the industry and transform everything. Some companies will grow and do well. Others will suffer. Whether you are a customer, an investor, a worker or executive in this business, it’s important to make sure you understand the direction your company is taking.
You want to be with a company on the growth side of the change wave. That is the only side that matters going forward. Without growth, companies will struggle in the years to come.
There are new opportunities and new challenges ahead. Some companies will continue to grow and to lead. Others will not. The only question is which companies will be the leaders going forward? So, let’s keep our eyes open and watch this transformation continue to reshape the pay TV industry.