Things are about to get a bit busier in the cellular battlefield. Cox Communications is going to be launching their own cellular network soon. To those in the wireless industry it’s been known that Cox planned on doing so. Cox (which is the third largest cable company in the U.S.) originally planned to work with Sprint Nextel to get a quick start into the wireless marketplace while building their own network. However the parties weren’t able to agree on pricing and market strategy so that ended up falling through.
I find a few things interesting about Cox’s strategies in moving into the cellular marketplace (aside from the obvious tidbit of having a new entry into what seems to be an already saturated and somewhat brutal marketplace). First, I find it interesting that Cox was teaming up with Sprint while building their own network. The interesting thing here is that Sprint’s 4G network is based on WiMax while the network that Cox is building is an LTE network, the same that Verizon and AT&T plan on using for their 4G network. Why not work with them while getting quick entry into the market?
Next, we’re back with the partnerships. Time Warner Cable and Comcast, the other major players in the cable market, are backing Sprint Nextel and Clearwire’s joint venture in the WiMax rollout that has already begun. Again…it seems odd to me that Cox would venture out on their own when they could have power in numbers and also have the ability to learn from the other cable companies as they refine their network and marketing strategy.
It will be an interesting thing to watch unfold. I guess there still are a few areas in technology that have that Wild West feel. Only time will tell to see which technologies win, which companies dominate and how the consumer will be affected by all this.