US Mobile Virtual Network Operators 2010: The Definitive Guide and Critical Analysis of the US MVNO Market07 Mar 2011 • by Natalie Aster
The MVNO market is going on its 10th year in the US. Long before it was even called an MVNO there were companies, then aptly named resellers that purchased bulk airtime from the wireless carriers and sold it to the consumer under their own brand. The business has come a long way since, but the core function of the business remains the same.
It is the aim of the study “US Mobile Virtual Network Operators 2010: The Definitive Guide and Critical Analysis of the US MVNO Market” by Mind Commerce Publishing LLC to capture all the information that is available on the different players in the field today and provide it in an easy to review and analyze overview with our professional analysis of each company, its activities, chances of success and future potential summarizing the analysis.
The United States wireless market has been undergoing significant consolidation over the last several years as the larger network operators have been going through a flurry of mergers and acquisitions. Notably the Cingular purchase of AT&T Wireless for $41 billion (and assumed debt of approximately $6 billion) in 2003 and the Sprint Nextel merger of 2005. Also AllTel has been active gobbling up Western Wireless. This consolidation leaves an estimated footprint by carrier as suggested in Table 1.
The top 4 carriers T-Mobile, Sprint Nextel, Verizon Wireless and AT&T Mobility are the only national providers selling wireless service in every market in the US. TDMA was mainly utilized by AT&T Wireless, VoiceStream (later T-Mobile) and Cingular, all of which later made a commitment to GSM. Verizon Wireless and Sprint PCS are utilizing CDMA and Nextel was committed to iDEN, however post the Sprint Nextel merger, the company will be focusing on CDMA EV-DO for its network upgrade thus slowly eradicating iDEN from the American wireless market.
In addition to the already established wireless carriers companies like Craig McCaw’s ClearWire, Rupert
Murdoch and Charles Ergens Wireless DBS and others are coming to the market with WiMAX and Wi-Fi based systems that they hope will allow them to enter the telecommunications market without spending the many billions of dollars required to build out a nationwide CDMA or GSM network. The wireless industry generated $151 billiona in 2009 and is well on its way to surpass that in 2010.
Published: January 2010
Price: US$ 995.00
Pricing Overview and Analysis
Pricing in the US wireless space has seen a drastic decline as competition increased and the only parameter considered for the vast majority of the US population was "How many minutes do I get per month". The American carriers rose to the challenge and a per minute pricing on postpaid that hovered around $0.08-$0.10 2 years ago is now shattered by rates as low as $0.02 -$0.03. And this does not include the fact that all the national carriers hand-out unlimited off-peak minutes on 98% of their postpaid plans. This slippery road was started for prepaid in 2003 when Virgin Mobile USA and Boost Mobile came out with - at that time - very aggressive rates upsetting TracFone and other incumbents that had been sitting comfortably on the market for years. Initially Virgin and Boost focused on price, but quickly realized another parameter might be just as attractive - customer service was invented in prepaid long before, but had never been taken seriously. The market was wide open and the carriers did not seem to care about the prepaid consumers so many of the existing providers saw an unparalleled market opportunity and maybe rushed a little too fast for the gold. With the new players adding both service and aggressive pricing the prepaid industry woke up and pricing that in 2006 hovered around $0.12-$0.15 is sitting comfortably today at $0.08-$0.12.
More information can be found in the report “US Mobile Virtual Network Operators 2010: The Definitive Guide and Critical Analysis of the US MVNO Market” by Mind Commerce Publishing LLC.
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