In an attempt to offer a better alternative to dearer data plans from cellular firms like Verizon and AT&T, Cable company Cablevision System Corp on Monday announced the launch of its wireless Internet phone service in February this year.
With the help of WiFi-based Freewheel phone service, the company aims to retain and potentially boost the number of its subscribers.
The cable companies all over are witnessing a bad time as they are losing out to lower-priced bundled television and Internet services from telecom companies.
According to Cablevision, the Freewheel phone service is the first of its kind services to be introduced by a cable firm and aims to target the users who want unlimited amounts of data for downloading on their mobile devices using WiFi channel, which is also considered to be less expensive in comparison to a cellular connection.
Tech analysts believe such services could pose serious challenges to the traditional telecom carriers. Presently, carriers like Massachusetts-based Scratch Wireless and Republic Wireless offer users several similar services that bank on WiFi to control data costs.
Releasing a statement, Cablevision chief operating officer Kristin Dolan, said, “There has been a dramatic shift in how consumers use their mobile devices: today, it’s all about data, and WiFi is now preferred and clearly superior to cellular.”
Cablevision, which is regulated by New York’s Dolan family, has made investments in the ‘Optimum WiFi network’ since the year 2007. It has set up more than 1.1 million WiFi hotspots or access points across New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.
The WiFi phone service by Cablevision will be offered at the price of USD 29.95 a month and USD 9.95 a month for those who have subscribed its “Optimum Online” service. The WiFi service will be exclusively available at the Motorola Moto G smartphones, according to the company.
The Android phone, which costs USD 180, will be sold to the “Freewheel” users without any contract at a discounted rate of USD 99.95, it added.