AT&T recently closed its $49 billion acquisition of satellite TV provider DIRECTV, making the company an even bigger giant in the telecom world, and is trying to take advantage of its large new customer base by offering deals to bundle their satellite TV service with AT&T’s telecom services. AT&T’s rival wireless carrier, Sprint, has decided to go after the same customer base, offering a year of free wireless service to DIRECTV customers who sign up with Sprint.
Here’s more on the deal from Forbes:
Sprint will offer DirecTV customers who sign up for its service unlimited voice and text and up to 2 GB of data per month for a full year, while also providing customers an option to trade in their existing phones for cash or have their early termination fees paid for by Sprint. After a year, customers will pay a monthly fee of $50 for the plan. Customers must buy or lease a new phone through Sprint and will also have to pay a one-time $36 activation fee, in addition to the usual monthly taxes and surcharges. The offer is well timed, running through September 30, likely targeting customers who are looking to upgrade to Apple’s latest iPhones, which are due in mid-September. In comparison, AT&T is offering $300 in bill credits to DirecTV customers for each wireless line they port to the carrier, as well as a $10 per month recurring discount, in addition to trade-in benefits for smartphones. This effectively values Sprint’s offer at $600 and AT&T’s offer at about $420 for the first year, excluding trade-in benefits.
The question is, will all of this work? Early predictions show that even though the offer through Sprint has a higher monetary value, AT&T has greater coverage and customer satisfaction. But this could take a chunk out of the money that AT&T hoped to gain immediately through this merger, and that’s probably a victory enough.