What Does "Winning" Look Like for Telco Fixed Internet Access?

What does “winning” look like for telco internet access? Many tier-one U.S. telcos, for example, have about 40 percent market share. Is that winning? It depends on one’s perspective.

Share of 40 percent means one thing if share previously was 35 percent. It means something else if share formerly was 50 percent.

Many independent telcos other than AT&T and Verizon have been losing market share to cable operators for some years, and might well have less than 40 percent share. Cincinnati Bell seems to have been in that category, and seems to find that its fiber to premises program is allowing it to regain market share.

“Our results demonstrate that we continue to compete and win against cable with fiber,” said Leigh Fox, Cincinnati Bell CEO. The caveat is that Charter Communications has not yet launched its DOCSIS 3.1 gigabit service in Cincinnati. That will be the test of whether Cincinnati Bell can continue taking share from Charter.

“Competing” in this case means having 40 percent market share, and gaining about three share points in the year.

“During 2017, we added both video and Internet subscribers despite continued intense marketing and advertising efforts from our primary competitor,” said Fox. “In the fourth quarter, we added 5,400 Fioptics Internet subscribers and ended the year with approximately 227,000 total subscribers with penetration rates reaching 40 percent and ARPU increasing three percent year-over-year.

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