Dish’s view of cable operators entering wireless
Dish Network (DISH) stated during an earnings call that it believed the wireless industry would see much more consolidation going forward. Among the major cable companies, Comcast (CMCSA) has already ventured into the wireless industry by launching a wireless service. Comcast launched this wireless service by activating a 2011 MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) agreement with Verizon Communications (VZ).
Dish Network (DISH) was asked about this trend during its 2Q17 earnings call on August 3, 2017. The company noted that while it expected this trend to continue, it also expects the connectivity business to be a competitive industry.
Dish added that for companies like Comcast, activating a MVNO agreement may not be enough in the long run and that Comcast could pursue a bigger entry in the wireless industry.
Why are cable companies pursuing wireless?
Cable companies have been pursuing wireless technology due to the popularity of streaming content on mobile phones. This technology has led to an increase in mobile data traffic, and video traffic is a major component of mobile data traffic. This trend has also led to Dish Network’s spectrum becoming increasingly valuable.
As indicated by the chart above, Cisco’s (CSCO) VNI[1. visual networking index] forecasts indicate that in 2019, video is expected to comprise ~75% of the mobile data traffic in the United States (SPY).