On 10 October, U.S. operator Sprint began offering its Business Share Plan customers with installment billing double the normal amount of data, delivering between 240 GB and 800 GB per month to those with 50 to 100 lines. This promotion, which runs until 31 October, will cost US $50.00–$150.00 less than a similar promotion from AT&T. Sprint will also waive the US $15.00 access fees for unlimited talk and text through the end of 2015 for customers who bring their number to Sprint and activate a phone. The cost of the new Business Share Plan offerings range from US $400.00 per month for 240 GB of data to US $1,350.00 per month for 800 GB of data.
Clearly, Sprint is vying for market share in the business customer segment by offering more value. When it comes to subscriber value from mobile plans, data is the most important metric, because voice minutes or SMS can be replaced with OTT services such as WhatsApp and Skype, whereas there is no easy substitution for cellular data. For example, the formula for our Tarifica Score™—an objective measure currently available for consumer plans only—weights data more heavily than other plan elements. For MNOs, offering more data—or similar amounts of data for less money than competitors, for example, Sprint’s promotion against the comparable AT&T promotion—is an excellent way to offer more value for customers.
However, there are other factors that go into the formula that will nonetheless work against Sprint. The company’s network coverage leaves a lot to be desired, so this promotion while appealing, will not necessarily end up giving Sprint a competitive advantage over AT&T. In addition, Sprint suffers from slower internet speeds than those of its counterparts, which exacerbates the problem. This promotion is a step in the right direction, but it still may not be enough to offer better value for customers than other business plans.
The above item appeared in a recent issue of The Tarifica Alert, a weekly resource that analyzes noteworthy developments in the telecoms industry from around the world. To access all of the latest articles and issues: http://www.tarifica.com/TarificaAlert.aspx