Filling in a missing piece of the cable-telephone “bundle,” an alliance of major cable operators completed their deal to resell wireless service provided by Sprint Nextel.
Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications and Advance Newhouse will resell co-branded wireless service to their cable customers. Cable executives believe that they need a wireless product to fully compete against telephone companies, who are cobbling together their own bundle of telephone, high-speed Internet, cellular and video services.
Each cable company will provide customer service for cell subscribers within its territory, including the charges on a single bill. Operators see the billing arrangement as an essential part of the deal, though integrating telephone and cable billing systems is enormously difficult.
The CEOs of the cable companies – including Comcast’s Brian Roberts and Time Warner Cable’s Glenn Britt – have scheduled a press briefing on the deal in New York this afternoon.