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Cable Barbarians at the Gates, Incumbents Losses Mount

Have the US incumbents written off their landline businesses?  It certainly seems as if they must have. 

Via Om Malik, here are selected line loss figures for some of the most prominent of the bunch.  These are annualized rates, paired with actual losses in the quarter. 

  • BellSouth – total access line declined 6.1% (238,000), residential lines declined 8.8% (120,000) to bring down the total access lines to 19.8 million.
  • AT&T – 6% (600,000) drop in access lines to bring down the total to 48.8 million
  • Verizon – 7% (830,000) drop in access lines to bring the total down to 47.97 million
  • Qwest – 5.2% drop in access lines.  

The pattern is consistent, and perhaps even a little positive.  In August of last year, James Enck reported selected Q2 2005 land line losses for North America (on an annualized basis) as:

  • Bell Canada -5% vs. -2.68%
  • Telus -4.33% vs. -1.8%
  • SBC -6.36% vs. -4.92%
  • Verizon -6.52% vs. -4.96%
  • Bellsouth -7.32% vs. -4.76%

Between the three largest players in the US — Bellsouth, AT&T, and Verizon — they collectively control around nearly 120 million landlines.  A 7% annual decline represents 8.5 million cancelled phone lines.  That’s a helluva opportunity for cable and wireless. 

{ 1 comment… add one }

  • skibare May 4, 2006, 4:31 am

    the real story here is Level3 carries all those cable and Vonage customers

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