Thursday, May 14, 2015

Dish Network "Is Going to be a Wireless Company"

“We are going to be a wireless company,” said Charlie Ergen, Dish Network CEO and chairman. Ergen didn’t specify precisely what form that might take, but the notable take-away was that Ergen did appear to commit to entering the business.

All options--wholesale and retail--presumably remain open.

With the caveat that one never can predict what might happen, and that some moves suggesting Dish Network will launch a new mobile service also improve the chances Dish Network will have an option to sell its spectrum at a large profit, Dish Network seems to be preparing for an operational launch of a new mobile service.

“We are preparing for something big,” Yahoo reports. “We have reinvented ourselves in the past and we are preparing to do it again.”

As some have suggested would be the logical approach, Dish Network might be preparing for an approach to mobile that is “video heavy.” Though it is not the only mobile company aiming at a functional triple play or quadruple play, Dish Network also reportedly says the new direction will
be something that “changes entertainment forever.”

Dish Network CEO and Chairman Charlie Ergen has in the past said that if he were launching a video entertainment business today, he might not use satellites for delivery. Also, the recent launch of Sling TV further indicates Ergen’s belief that a shift to over the top distribution is coming.

“The technology is changing,” said Ergen. Over the next three to five years the important change will be “the cloud,” not just mobile or video. Of course, to some extent, references to “Internet of Things” have become almost standard boilerplate for any executives in the communications business.

Still, even in the early stages, Dish is likely to lean on its video assets in crafting an approach to a mobile market that is quite competitive. More than offering a triple play (voice, video, data) or quadruple play (voice, video, data, mobile), Dish Network will have to create a new niche in the mobile business.

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