Wed, 8 May 2013
Cable vs. Wireless with Susan P. Crawford author of “Captive Audience: The Telecom Industry and Monopoly Power in the New Gilded Age”
In recent weeks, we’ve heard from a number of cable companies like Comcast (CMCSA), Charter Communications (CHTR), Time Warner Cable (TWC) and others. All in all, it’s been a message that reinforces the increasing degree of what I call the Connected Society - WiFi, the Cloud, high speed Internet and on demand programming. Mix in the shift toward smartphones and tablets, and we find the notion of appointment TV viewing is nearly gone save for sporting events.
Those cable companies are battling with mobile operators, such as AT&T (T), Verizon (VZ) and others for consumer dollars. As they do this, the operators have made it more expensive for consumers to utilize their services even though new technologies have made it cheaper for those companies to deliver said services. Just this past December, Charter Communications instituted a price increase on its high-speed Internet service. At Comcast, price increases on video service and customers upgrading to HD packages and digital video recorders (DVRs) helped boost the company’s first quarter profit by 17%.
For those wondering why I’m up on all of this, the growing Connected Society is a key part of my Always On, Always Connected PowerTrend
Joining me on PowerTalk to discuss why this and what it means is Susan P. Crawford author of the new book “Captive Audience: The Telecom Industry and Monopoly Power in the New Gilded Age.” Ms. Crawford is a law professor who served as special assistant to President Obama for science, technology and innovation policy.
It’s a terrific conversation and not only is Susan an ace on the subject matter but doesn’t pull any punches. Some of the key insights that Susan and I discussed on this edition of PowerTalk include: