Those who prefer the status quo must have been shocked when T-Mobile announced its new JUMP program (Just Upgrade My Phone) at yesterday’s media event. This new program lets customers upgrade their phones whenever they want – up to two times in a year.
At face value, this move addresses a fairly pervasive customer problem: watching friends and family rave about their new devices as they impatiently wait for their contracts to expire to get the latest technology. However, there is an interesting side effect of this program: new customer behaviors. Let’s face it, every time you get a new phone, you find something cool to do with it or a feature that you can’t possibly live without. Consider FaceTime’s pervasive use after the iPhone 5 release or the heralded Facebook Home/HTC First announcement as shining examples of this phenomenon.
From the mobile operator’s perspective, nurturing “disruption” has pluses and minuses. Consumers love cutting edge mobile technology and anyone that makes it more accessible. On the back-end, supporting rapid change can be risky as networks will have to contend with the different nuances each individual device, app or service needs as well as the associated bandwidth fluctuations they create.
Now, insight from analytics solutions becomes critical for success. Those who can better predict trends will be better able to allocate resources to best support these new behaviors and technologies.
After all, as CEO John Legere aptly put it yesterday, “Network experience and customer experience is the true test. If it’s not right, you lose customers.”
Qoe in the Digital Transformation Era
More on T-Mobile
This year, 5G took center stage and, for the first time that I can remember, car manufacturers showed up at MWC to demonstrate their connected and autonomous cars that 5G should “easily” enable.
2013 has been a year of ginormous communications changes, from the mind-blowing growth of smartphone usage to the game-changing addition of WebRTC. Organizations have been increasingly focusing on improving customer service, recognizing that while voice is still king, customers need to know that they can reach companies in other ways too, like through social media or video chat or instant messaging. Big data has made it possible to begin anticipating issues and improving and personalizing communications.
LTE is spreading across the globe. Yet Mobile Service Providers still have to figure out how to best leverage the speed and capacity that LTE brings to create value for their customers – not to mention how best to generate more revenue.
Still leading the way in terms of the number of customers is Verizon Wireless. With 118 million subscribers, it is just a little ahead of its nearest rival AT&T, who have around 107 million subscribers. In terms of where both were one year ago, this represents only a 2% increase for AT&T but over a 7% increase for Verizon Wireless.