Could BT be thinking of buying EE for its 4-play?The web is awash with rumours that Vodafone has been having cozy chats about forming an unholy alliance against BT – the former UK telecoms duopoly. Vodafone has, of course, acquired bits of the other duopoly – Cable & Wireless here. BSkyB might be exploring ways of reducing its dependence on BT for its fixed broadband service – especially given the outage recent suffered by Sky broadband customers in South West London here. However, BT is building close links with EE over a possible consumer broadband offering. But GoMo recently speculated here that EE might be up for sale. BT is a logical buyer.
Despite GoMo News‘ own experience that having all your eggs in one basket is a bad idea, industry pundits are still advocating a four-play offering as a means of churn prevention.
We had the classic four-play (land line; broadband; TV & mobile) with Virgin Mobile and nearly dropped the lot but ended merely switching our BlackBerry over to Orange.
So BT – which once owned Cellnet (the forerunner of O2), might decide it needs to own a UK mobile network too. It should work wonders for cashflow, too.
Meanwhile, Vodafone already has an arrangement with BSkyB over content. It offers Sky Sports (not including F1) to those on its 4G tariffs.
The MNO might well be considering offering more content from Sky so that it can offer TV to its existing customerbase.
Observers seem to ignore the fact that if Vodafone and BSkyB are worried about competing with BT’s growing fibre optic based fixed broadband service, the only real option is to form an alliance with Virgin Media.