This is the story of the creation of Go90, Verizon's attempt to create a new service that appeals to a demographic it views as significantly important to its future, as told by some of the key executives involved in its development. It's a story of how Verizon wanted to create a product that would appeal to millennials, driven by a desire to create a large audience the carrier could deliver to marketers for targeted advertising (advertisers have largely been flummoxed by millennials' aversion to traditional pay-TV products). And more broadly, it's the story of how a multibillion-dollar telecommunications company known for its staid leadership and methodically consistent financial results incubated a startup-- and a startup mentality-- inside itself.
The Go90 initiative will rise or fall on the strength of the video content it delivers, and almost nothing else matters. Verizon will surely spend a lot to market the service, but it will be useless to advertisers if no one tunes in.
Verizon will continue to sell its FiOS linear video product to consumers but the company is also ramping up its Go90 mobile video service and its skinny bundle packages to accommodate the rapid growth in consumers looking to ditch their linear service in favor of over-the-top services.
Verizon Communications has no interest in buying Dish Network but is open to discussing how Verizon could get access to Dish's wireless spectrum or forge some kind of wholesale arrangement, according to Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam.
Verizon Communications CEO Lowell McAdam wants Congress to take a tougher stance on rules governing bidding in spectrum auctions, and called out Dish Network in particular for its bidding strategy in the AWS-3 auction. In a letter to key lawmakers, McAdam also urged Congress to be more proactive in regulating telecommunications, curb the FCC's recently approved net neutrality rules and rewrite and update the Telecommunications Act.
Verizon yesterday appointed John Stratton as the new chief of its wireless business, replacing Dan Mead, who had been the CEO of Verizon Wireless since 2010. Mead will stay with the company to oversee the sale of Verizon's wireline operations in California, Florida and Texas to Frontier Communications, and will retire after that.
Verizon Communications may be talking to AOL about a potential content partnership, but it is not interested in acquiring the company. Speaking at the 2015 Citi Global Internet, Media & Telecommunications conference in Las Vegas today, Verizon Chairman and CEO Lowell McAdam said that yesterday's Bloomberg report claiming that Verizon approached AOL about a potential acquisition or joint venture is inaccurate. "I think of AOL and a lot of other media companies as potential partners," he said. "But saying we are having significant acquisition discussions is not accurate."
Verizon Communications has hired TAP Advisors LLC to look into a sale of network assets including its cell towers, according to a Reuters report.
Verizon Communications was opened up to the possibility of selling its wireless towers because of AT&T's agreement last year to sell and lease 9,700 of its cell towers to Crown Castle in a $4.85 billion deal, according to Verizon Communications CFO Fran Shammo. Financial analysts think that Verizon has around 12,500 to 15,000 towers and could be looking to sell a substantial portion of those.
Verizon Communications expects to launch its own Internet-based video service by the middle of 2015, the company's chief executive, Lowell McAdam, revealed Thursday.