Major carriers are redefining the bundle, with mobile bundles now the battleground to differentiate a carrier’s offering. Verizon has embraced the move to mobile bundles with the announcement of video game subscriptions as its latest strategy.
Bundling was once the domain of wireline services, but the triple play bundle heyday is in the rear view mirror. Broadband has become the dominant service and packaging it with voice and video has lost a bit of its luster.
The bundling momentum is now with mobile, as wireless carriers look to layer on a variety of services to entice customers to switch and to stay with their mobile plan. Verizon may be the most active with this strategy.
Today, it announced adding Apple Arcade and Google Play Pass as gaming options for select unlimited mobile plans. Both services offer a package of mobile video games and normally cost $4.99/month. Verizon is offering both a free 6-month or 12-month package, depending on the mobile plan.
These video game options join several entertainment options from Verizon, allowing subscribers to choose from free packages of Disney+, Hulu, ESPN+, discovery+, and Apple Music. The $55/month Get More Unlimited plan includes all of these free for 12 months.
By my math, all of those purchased individually equates to over $30/month, which makes for a compelling argument to those who are interested in those services.
Verizon also sees these moves as strengthening the value proposition for 5G, as high bandwidth and low latency networks make for better video and gaming performance.
“If you’re gaming on the go, Verizon 5G Ultra Wideband levels up your entertainment experience with super-fast game downloads, so you have your favorite games with you wherever you are,” Verizon touts in a press release about its new gaming bundle. “Love massive multiplayer online games? 5G Ultra Wideband’s lower lag times ensure your character does what they are supposed to do the moment you click the button.”
The mobile bundles trend also includes other carriers, including T-Mobile, which offers a variety of bundled services too, including Netflix and discounts on YouTube TV. AT&T is not as aggressive with mobile bundles, but it does offer deals for HBO Max. Even UScellular offers video-on-demand credits for Redbox with select plans.