Both DirecTV and Dish TV recently announced they will bundle their Satellite TV service with high-speed Internet service via satellite through WildBlue Communications.
Cable television has been leading the way, bundling not only cable TV, but phone and high-speed Internet services. People are looking for two things when it comes to television and Internet connection – price and service. Cable has been aggressively responding, and Satellite TV is starting to get the message.
WildBlue launched its high-speed Internet connection service a year ago and has 60,000 subscribers. Their monthly service ranges from $49.95 to $79.95, with download speeds of up to 1.5 megabits per second. Their one draw back is the $299 equipment charge.
Pricing is yet to be determined for Dish Network and DirecTV packages bundled with WildBlue services, but they will have to offer a smaller equipment charge, or no charge at all in order to be competitive.
Satellite TV companies have offered DSL Internet connection for some time. They attempted to market to people without cable access in rural and remote areas. But both DirecTV and Dish Network have had miserable sales due to uncompetitive prices. DirecTV charged $580 for installation alone. The only people who bought the services were those that had no other alternative for high-speed connection, but now local phone services are able to reach these customers with radio towers.
Bundled Services is the Future
Customers don’t want to deal with a myriad of companies. They demand more simplicity. They want to deal with a single company that is willing to discount multiple services.
Comcast, the largest cable provider in Colorado, offers packages starting at $112 for cable TV, Internet service at 6 megabits per second and phone service. According to Cindy Parsons, spokeswoman for Comcast Colorado:
“We are accustomed to competition and expect there will be a wide variety of promotions from our competitors.”
Qwest Communications recently dropped the price of its bundled services. New customers can pay about $87 per month for local and long distance calling, 1.5-megabits Internet speeds and satellite TV service.
The two satellite TV powerhouses will have to offer similar bundled prices if they are going to remain competitive. And equally important is their Internet connection service will need to be reliable.
This new deal with WildBlue Communications will help Dish Network and DirecTV better compete with cable and telephone companies such as Comcast and Qwest. Consumers should benefit with alternative solutions and lower prices.