AT&T announced today that they have surpassed the 100,000 subscriber mark for their U-verse IPTV product. The 100,000th customer, the Pierson family of Los Angeles, will receive a variety of gifts, including a year of free U-verse service. AT&T also announced a few new features coming to U-verse, including a weather/information widget, integration with yellowpages.com, and a suite of Yahoo powered games.
Announcements like this truly bring home the reality of the competitive environment we are now in. While 100k video customers is a “blip” on the 100 million+ television household radar screen of the U.S., it nevertheless represents an indication that the battle is on between cable, telecom, and DBS. After all, those 100k subscribers came from somewhere and they represent lost opportunity for AT&T’s cable and DBS competitors. The future ahead will be littered with these types of announcements, from both sides. All of whom will be claiming victory for a battle that will takes years, if not decades to play out and declaring clear winners and losers may be very elusive.