American telecommunications giants have refuted plans to establish partnerships with Amazon in order to provide cheap wireless communications to Prime users.
At the end of last week, reports appeared in the media that Amazon is in talks with Verizon Communications, T-Mobile US, and Dish Network. These materials claimed that the e-commerce giant intends to establish cooperation with telecommunications companies in order to offer Prime tariff plans to customers for $ 10 per month. The media also reported that Amazon does not exclude the possibility of introducing free tariff plans.
Sometime later, the retailer, in a statement that did not directly address efforts to interact with telecommunications companies, noted that work on finding new benefits for Prime users is ongoing, but currently, the addition of wireless communications is not considered as a planned initiative.
Firms operating in the telecommunications sector reported that negotiations with Amazon are not underway and there are no such plans.
A Verizon spokesperson said the company is not in discussions with the e-commerce giant about reselling its wireless network. He also said that the company is always ready to participate in cooperation projects, but currently, there are no negotiations on the appropriate direction.
T-Mobile said that the inclusion of the company’s wireless network in Prime Service is not discussed. Separately, representatives of the firm stressed that Amazon reported the absence of these intentions.
Dish Network has not yet provided any comments on the negotiations with the e-commerce giant. Last month, there were reports that this company is discussing the offer of wireless data plans through Amazon in preparation for the deployment of its 5G network. The media also reported that Dish Network management stated the need to make sure that Apple smartphones will be able to work on the new network. This issue is of strategic importance for the company since it has the intention to gain access to a large iPhone market.
According to some experts, the appearance of Amazon in the wireless market may cause serious disruptions in the telecommunications sector. They justify their position by the fact that the e-commerce giant can offer more financially advantageous tariff plans.
Christopher Ali, a professor of telecommunications at the University of Pennsylvania, says that Amazon, using its strength and power, can undermine the positions of potential competitors in the new arena of activity. Also, according to him, the actions of the retailer may provoke a decrease in the cost of mobile phones.
Currently, Amazon and Walmart are actively competing with each other as part of the struggle for customer loyalty. Amazon Prime and Walmart+ added approximately 12 million subscribers over the year. Amazon’s user base is 182 million people. Walmart+ membership has 59 million customers.
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