Verizon CEO Discusses Unlimited Data, Pricing and More at Investor's Conference

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Sep 24, 2013.

  1. dgstorm
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    dgstorm Editor in Chief Staff Member Premium Member

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    If there was ever any doubt that Verizon's bottom line is only focused on keeping its shareholders happy, then that doubt might just be squashed after you read this. At an investor's conference recently, Verizon's CEO Lowell McAdam conveyed his perspective on Verizon's prices, objectives, services, and much more. Here are some of the more interesting topics from his discussion at the conference. The first one we are reporting is related to his perspective on Unlimited Data plans. He believes that unlimited data options aren't sustainable. He specifically said, "With unlimited, it's the physics that breaks it. If you allow unlimited usage, you just run out of gas."

    He also elaborated on how Verizon compares its pricing plans to its competition, indicating he doesn't believe the new competitive pricing models offered by the smaller carriers like Sprint and T-Mobile will spark a price war. He added, "We never have and never will lead on price."

    McAdam said that Verizon will focus on beating everyone with a superior data network, claiming that Verizon's network rollout was one year ahead of AT&T and 3-4 years ahead of Sprint and/or T-Mobile. He included, "We've got footprint we like. We're going to press that advantage."

    The CEO also shared some details about Verizon's pricing strategy with devices. McAdam discussed the "friction" Verizon puts in the process of upgrading a smartphone. He indicated it is designed to make it tougher for customers to get a new device, because this helps the company's bottom line. He added that their new Verizon Edge monthly installment program & early upgrade program helps cut into the device cost for the company.

    There you have it straight from the top folks. Of course we can't fault a company for striving to make profit... after-all, that's what they are in business for. Still, isn't it possible to be loyal to your shareholders AND still offer additional value to your customers? A company can make a competitive level of profit and still have a customer focused mentality. Is that missing from Verizon?

    Source: CNET
  2. Hugh Jass
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    Hugh Jass Well-Known Member

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    Scum.
    1 person likes this.
  3. TatDroid
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    TatDroid Active Member

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    Translation: "We've figured out a way to make the customers pay more for the phone hardware" (just in case there is still anyone out there that had any doubt that the Edge plan is good for Verizon and BAD for the customer!)
  4. gadgetrants
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    gadgetrants Well-Known Member

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    I actually admire this stance. I think Verizon has struck an exceptional balance between product, customer service, and profit. Many of us are angry, unhappy, and frustrated because OUR SPECIFIC NEEDS aren't optimized, but I bet every VZW customer can also highlight 2 or 3 great experiences they've had. Sure, some feel extorted and like they have no choice because there's no other game in town, but those are likely not the major metropolitan areas.

    Each of us would run the company differently. But I really doubt any of us would make the shareholders more money.

    -Matt
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  5. TheOldFart
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    TheOldFart New Member

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    No, it is business, whether you like it or not. It is no different than the auto companies, defense companies or any other company. People use Verizon because they have the best network and the best service. They have invested a lot of money on their network and that is why we get the coverage that we demand.

    Now, am I happy with going from 20 month update to 24 month update. NO. Am I happy with the additional $30 upgrade fee. NO. Am I happy with a few other things that they have taken away the last few years. NO. However, I would not give up the Verizon coverage and service to get these back. What is the use of getting an update at 20 months if I don't have a connection at some of the places that I spend days or weeks a year? What is the use of not paying a $30 upgrade fee if my wife loses the connection while talking to the nurse at her mother's nursing home while we're driving where the others don't have coverage and Verizon does? The vast Verizon coverage didn't come free for them. Somebody has to pay for it and that somebody is us. Are their profits too big? I don't know, perhaps, but they do have to make a reasonable profit to continue to increase coverage and move up to the next speed technology increase.

    If you're unhappy with Verizon then dump them for one of the other companies. You'll still pay an upgrade fee, mostly a few dollars more. You'll still have data limits or slower service at some limit. You'll still have a rip-off every 6 month new phone plan.
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  6. mountainbikermark
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    mountainbikermark DF Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    Translation to point 1. We're not going to add more bandwidth.
    Translation to point 2. We're number one and can't assimilate Sprint or T mobile due to the evil government watch dogs.
    Translation to point 3. We're number 1 and are going to rest on our laurels because we can do whatever we want. Sex off if you don't like it. Threaten to leave and we'll just say bye bye and sex off.
    Translation to point 4. Repeat translation 3
    While I still think the average employee of Verizon is excellent, at the same time they are so tied up with corporate bullshirt some are just ignorant and clueless while others try to help as best they can but just can't.
    Best network? The cell my phones connected to until recently at my house went dark (best way I can describe it because even 100' from it it doesn't connect to my phone anymore) a couple of weeks ago. It came back for about 40 hours early last week then went dark again Verizon says it's dark because it never existed that Open Signal app had been lying to me since my Inc days. As to why I went from decent 4g to no data to spotty, weak 3g their answer was I never had 4g at my house. The lady at tech support 3 did her best, took all the info and gave me her email to send the screen shots and photos of the cell to but called back about an hour later telling me that's what the local techs reported so her hands are now tied. No way under the sun a trouble ticket got put in and the techs checked the area the same day . They supposedly sent a tech rep in front of my house. If they showed up they were driving an invisible vehicle. Yeah I'm a lot disappointed because my Note2 worked to its fullest at my house for 2 days then has gone to use Wi-Fi or its a data paperweight.

    Support Our Troops!!!
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  7. kodiak799
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    kodiak799 Well-Known Member

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    Bingo. Focusing on your network coverage and quality isn't exactly ignoring your customers. They are offering a product not designed to compete on price. Very different perspective than the OP.

    That they continue to lead in customer acquisitions and have an industry low turn (@1%) says they are doing something right, even if people think they are evil for charging a few bucks more than competitors
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  8. Bratster2
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    Bratster2 New Member

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    Well I guess I do have one good experience with vzw,

    great coverage

    That's it.
  9. kodiak799
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    kodiak799 Well-Known Member

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    For a cell phone that I, you know, use to make CALLS that's, like, REALLY important :)
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  10. New2u
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    New2u DF Super Moderator

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    Completely agree, the reason that unlimited data might not be sustainable is because they put very little to no money towards the back-end of their network. They upgrade their towers yes, but the lines going from their towers aren't. It takes money to upgrade their network and they aren't willing to shell out the money vs the investors figures. If 96% of their network is covered in people who only use 2GB or less of data, what would change if they had kept unlimited plans? Oh that's right.. nothing except their pocketbooks. The share everything plan is actually more expensive for me then my unlimited plan. So going from unlimited data to 2GB of data costs me more, HMMM. I don't see how he says they don't lead on price.. :blink: Their network is the best in the country is most places, that's why the really won't have as many people leave the network as claim they will. In all honesty I do like the way that t-mobile has their plans, because after 24-months you no longer pay on the phone, which is how it should be. With a verizon plan, that extra price that you are paying them for subsidizing your phone never goes away, it's their penalty to you for keeping your plans and not upgrading basically. (I do know that this is how it was done for years and years but it should change)

    With everything going to cloud storage and internet tv and radio, people will start using much more data on their smart phones then they had before. These plans were NEVER... let me say again NEVER intended to help the customers out at all, the CEO's knew this was going to happen so they put people on bucket data where they will end up forking over more money in the end to the companies for less of a product. Their edge plan for phones is just another gimmick to get themselves more money, oh we will let you upgrade earlier, but its a terrible plan for 99% of the customers who will be goaded into buying it.
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  11. tgyberg
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    tgyberg Well-Known Member

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    Hey how about a slightly lower priced plan for someone who uses very little data or minutes? How about a loyalty discount for people who have been with ya forever? Do that and I'll hate you less!
  12. zero7404
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    zero7404 New Member

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    if they make you pay an installment for the phone, the monthly bill should be less than what it is ... logically.

    but we dont live in a logical society.

    the day a wireless tech becomes available that allows users to tap into their home internet with thier cell phones from 100 miles away ... will be the day they start charging your home internet by the gb .....

    i feel like i just cornered myself with that ....

    Sent from my SCH-I545
  13. kodiak799
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    kodiak799 Well-Known Member

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    Of course....You're talking about a scenario where there's now one pie (instead of two) for wireless and cable.

    Consumer value isn't always created by lower prices, but sometimes thru additional services or content. And I think we've seen some of that, but more for people with multiple lines than individuals.

    And the CEO was correct about limited bandwidth. Additional spectrum can be offered (by the FTC, I think) or bought (from cable/satellite), but as it stands there are limits to what is currently available. Maybe new tech will change that, but even then don't expect to see a $30 truly unlimited plan where people start dropping home broadband. Haven't been able to find any articles, but I have to believe as usage and the # of users has increased that the cable companies have upped their access fees to the wireless providers.
  14. droidbionicmaster
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    droidbionicmaster New Member

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    The only thing I don't like is the data caps I still have unlimited and will keep unlimited. Its hard to believe some cable companies are capping Comcast is testing it out but still we shouldn't be told how much we can use.

    Sent from my DROID RAZR HD using Droid Forums
  15. Hugh Jass
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    Hugh Jass Well-Known Member

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    It's not that I disagree, I just think too much take and no give, and therefor Scum. If they offered better features and brought on more customers, that'll cost them money? That's not logical. They have some very bad business practices, some of which aren't even in the discussion at hand and no matter how much pressure irritated customers push they'll resist.

    Scum.
  16. bigdad63
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    bigdad63 Member

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    And do not forget the sudden move to most phones negating the cheap simple easily exchangeable and expandable storage format of the SD card which will, surprise surprise,force more people to use more cloud storage
  17. dgstorm
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    dgstorm Editor in Chief Staff Member Premium Member

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    You make a solid point with a great argument gadgetrants! Thanks for adding to the discussion. I knew someone would be able to offer a counter-point to some of my article's innuendo. There are almost always two sides to every argument. :)
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  18. huskur
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    huskur Well-Known Member

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    The part that gets me is this: (I have been with verizon since Oct.23 1999) They introduce the "smartphone" for the general population (non-blackberry, it was already established) Android and iPhone. You get lured in and they tell you how awesome their coverage is (and it is) how fast their 4G is (and it is) and tell you "watch the game on NFL mobile app" then use Pandora and stream music and get you used to using all these data consuming apps the whole time you have unlimited data. Thats all fine and good. Then comes the tiered crap.....and they tell you basically......"still use all those apps but use someone else's data". Now that is crap...I have to use someone esles network and STAY OFF Verizons? I don't get it. Why should I have to use my home Comcast wifi or my employers Comcast wifi or free public wifi when i go places (which "open" leaves you vulnerable) on my VERIZON device? I use my phone the way it is supposed to be used.....just like they advertised. I stream BTN2go a couple hours a day.....use pandora all the time at work and in my truck....I use between 10 and 20 GB monthly (30 during football season). I don't "abuse" it. I just "use" it for what it is. Yes, I have unlimited data. I pay full price for my devices to keep it. Some may ask "why not just hook up to wifi?" Well....I have wifi at home and wifi at work and wifi is just about everywhere you go...the fact is 4G is safer and faster than most public wifi's and really, if I wanted to hook up to wifi all the time...I would just use my tablet and carry a tracfone.
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  19. AECRADIO
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    AECRADIO Member

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    Service with VZW goes dark quite often for me. Usually the time is occurring late in the evening, and I see the signal level drop, I lose 3G, then it goes to 1X, then nothing. I get 'spurts' of service, then it goes out, and flutters up and down for hours, then I see the 3G indicator and it remains.
    I perform cell site work, and these actions are not part of the site's normal operation, as and 'data grabbing' is handled at the switch side, these are brown-outs of service.
    But if people are complaining about cost, then everybody desiring a new phone should buy them and forego the subsidy rape plans we have grown accustomed to, and request a lower average monthly bill for direct purchase.
    You get businesses t listen best, when you talk with your wallet!
    Want to help make these people 'see' the light, start dropping services, opt out of costly plans, and buy your phones over the subsidy rate, which actually forces people across the board to pay more for a form of phone welfare.
    No subsidies, means less deadbeat churn, higher profits and possibly, better monthly plan charges.
    I buy my phones, I prefer to own them outright as I have disdain for being placed on a leash over my choices.
    When the majority yells, the people listen, especially when they can make their money speak on their behalf, you can make a difference if you CHOOSE to. Networks run on money, when that begins to dry up, they rethink their strategies, and offer suggestions on how to retain their customer base, knowing it is not ONLY pricing that matters, but the entire business model that needs an overhaul!
    When shares drop due to poor performance, rest assured, the people pulling the strings WILL be paying attention.
    All networks suffer churn, it's part of the business, but extreme loss due to churn and dissatisfaction are two different issues rolled up as one.
    VZW does have the best service, and sure, in many ways they can improve, but the current plans/pricing is not sustainable to the customers, we WILL look elsewhere to get VALUE from the money we spend every month. Rural areas (RSAs) are hardest hit with repairs when outrages occur, this is because the revenue from these areas is not on par with metro areas (MSAs).
    The rural portion of the network is the last to get restored service, and this should never be allowed to occur, but does, and often.
    Business will always be business, and this should never be a part of customer service, they are mutually exclusive, as they serve two different masters.
  20. TheOldFart
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    TheOldFart New Member

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    Verizon luring you into using data and then you finding out that you overrun your 2GB or whatever is sort of like Google and some of the phone manufacturers having low memory and no SD expansion and then charging you for cloud storage. They are both expecting you to need more of both than you thought and having to pay either the cell company or the cloud storage company for what you need.

    Yes, I would like to have unlimited 4G data and never use wifi on my phone, but I can work around it easily. At home, I'm mostly on the computer, but if I want to web surf on the couch or in bed then I use either my tablet or phone on my secured wifi. Most times that I'm out there is wifi available. Does it really matter that the wifi is open if you're just web surfing the news, weather, Amazon, Newegg, etc? (Q: Does it put my phone at risk if no sensitive data is sent?) If I want to buy something or enter a password then I just turn off wifi and connect via 4G. I've only had 3G until I got my One last week, so I'm used to using my phone this way for the past 4 years. I've never had a problem. I've also never hit 1GB of Verizon data. Carrying a tablet and a basic phone is not an option. That is 2 devices compared to one and even the smallest 7" tablet is way to big to carry. Even the HTC One is pushing the max size for me, but it was worth it for the screen and speed. I don't stream music on my phone. I have about 18GB of MP3s loaded and listen to those through BT headphones or just use my Rockboxed Sansa Clip+ or iAudio7 with IEMs. I used to stream Pandora, but ended up not liking it as much as listening to the music that I already have. The sound quality is much better with even MP3 256 than it is with Pandora. To pay $550 more for the HTC One and then do that again in 2 years was not worth it to me to keep my unlimited data.
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