Saturday, September 19, 2009

Verizon No Longer Concerned With Telephones Connected With Wires

According to the New York Times, that's what Ivan Seidenberg, the chief executive of Verizon Communications said at a Goldman Sachs investor conference on Thursday.

Why? Traditional landline customer numbers have been shrinking and not just for Verizon. Earlier at the conference according to the same Times article, Randall Stephenson, chief executive of AT&T, and Ed Mueller, head of Qwest Communications, both talked about seeing a day when their landline businesses would stop shrinking.

Here's a few more interesting quotes from the piece:

Mr. Seidenberg said that his “thinking has matured” and that trying to predict when the company would stop losing voice landlines “is like the dog chasing the bus.”

Video is going to be the core product in the fixed-line business,” Mr. Seidenberg declared. And the focus will move from selling bundles of video and landline to video and cellphones, he added.

By converting most of its landline operation to FiOS, Mr. Seidenberg said Verizon had a new opportunity to cut costs sharply. FiOS uses the decentralized structure of the Internet rather than the traditional design of phone systems, which route all traffic through a tree of regional, then local offices.

We don’t look any different than Google,” he said. “We can begin to look at eliminating central offices, call centers and garages.”

The article finishes with Seidenberg talking of the psychological lift he had gotten when he finally escaped from the shadow of the legendary Alexander Graham Bell and his copper wires. “Once I shed myself of the burden of chasing the inflection point in access lines and say ‘I don’t care about that anymore,’ I am actually liberated,” he said.

[Thanks to Mark O for sending me a link to this article - be sure to read the entire New York Times piece linked here.]

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