Verizon Plans a la Carte Video Service by Mid-2015

Verizon plans to launch an "over-the-top" digital video broadcasting service by the middle of 2015, CEO Lowell McAdam said Thursday. Speaking at Goldman Sachs' Communacopia conference, McAdam said the service would deliver video content to wireless devices on an a la carte basis.

"No one wants to have 300 channels on your wireless device," McAdam said, according to a transcript of the talk published on the investment information site Seeking Alpha. "We are very focused on probably late first half of 2015 having products like these in the marketplace."

McAdam described how rapid changes in the marketplace have led to new opportunities for both Verizon and video content vendors. That has led to vendors being more willing to "embrace" a relationship with a carrier such as Verizon, he said. Much of that is due to the increasing use of mobile devices for content access of all kinds.

Over-the-top media services use the Internet rather than a service provider's dedicated network to deliver video, audio and other content to end-users.

"We do see that the millennials really want to look at (this) content over the iPads and other tablet devices and their smartphones," McAdam said. "The question is what (does) that transition look like, and...we're dedicated to making this a win-win for the mobile carriers as well as the content providers."

'A Major Transformation'

We reached out to cable industry analyst Jeff Kagan for his take on McAdam's announcement.

"The industry is in flux -- that's an opportunity," Kagan told us. "Verizon...thinks they can do it. It's an interesting idea. I like the guts they have."

With cable TV companies losing customers while streaming providers like Netflix and AT&T's Uverse gain them, the video content provider industry is in "the first half of a major transformation," Kagan said. "It's because of the Internet."

While that...

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