Verizon: Go90 is doing well on our competitors' networks
Verizon (NYSE: VZ) is only a few months into its official launch and marketing push around its mobile video platform Go90, but the carrier says the service is already performing well on its network as well as its competitors' networks.
Marni Walden, president of product Innovation and new businesses at Verizon, was reluctant to share specific metrics for Go90. But she did say Verizon is optimistic with what it's seen so far in terms of app downloads and audience connecting across multiple network platforms.
"And we like that because the main driver of revenue is advertising," Walden said, speaking Wednesday at the Citi Internet, Media, and Telecommunications conference in Las Vegas.
Walden called the money coming in from advertising on Go90 an incremental revenue source for Verizon and said that the carrier is exploring other ways to monetize Go90, including data utilization and subscription tiers, including monthly or pay-per-view.
"Today Go90 is more of a retail strategy but there's opportunity for further monetization through licensing or wholesale," Walden said.
Right now, though, the focus for Verizon and Go90 is scale. Walden refused to comment on how a potential Yahoo acquisition could help in gaining more scale but said there are all kinds of players Verizon could look to in order to achieve the same goal.
A big part of the scale strategy is original content. Walden confirmed that Verizon will soon be announcing content deals with Warner Music for music and a new original series with Sony.
"We have certain original content that's really taking off," Walden said, adding that Verizon is more interested in engagement metrics that show how often viewers are returning and how long they're staying.
One potential lure for snaring viewers and getting them to stick around without worrying about chewing through their rate plans is sponsored data. Walden said Verizon is doing a small trial now with sponsored data and that the carrier will become more active in that space through 2016. She also seemed confident that Verizon could navigate the FCC's new rules governing network prioritization.
Verizon is confident in the long-term success strategy for Go90, and that outlook is leading some execs at the carrier to publically push for more spectrum in order to help meet the demand mobile video is expecting to place on mobile networks over the next five years.