Wednesday, November 01, 2006

AT&T's Homezone misadventure

This has turkey written all over it right out of the box. The San Francisco Chronicle reports today that AT&T is unveiling a new service that bundles satellite TV from Dish Network with AT&T's DSL service. The idea of the so-called Homezone service is to allow subscribers to send movies, TV shows and music downloaded from the Internet to their TVs. It's supposedly to allow AT&T to better compete with the cable providers. It sounds too jury-rigged and complex to ultimately succeed and gain customer acceptance.

Rather than embark on such misadventures, AT&T should stick to the knitting of telecommunications. Ma Bell should concentrate on upgrading her long neglected wireline infrastructure in places like El Dorado County where AT&T is the incumbent telecom provider. There is plenty of work to do to ensure the delivery of reliable phone service and to eliminate the many broadband black holes that exist in the county. Homezone is a distraction and a misguided diversion of resources.

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