Thursday, January 05, 2006

Verizon and Comcast taking measures

Verizon and Comcast, locked in a bloody battle sending their share prices toward 52-week lows, may be pressured enough to take measures to bring forward their inflection points.

Lehman Brothers suggest that Verizon may scale back its FTTP plan toward FTTN. That would explain yesterday's 3% gain. Still, the stock is solidly in a downtrend since late 2004. Interestingly, Verizon's FTTP plans date from November 2003 (if I'm not mistaken). In other words, it took the market about a year to decide that FTTP is too expensive for its quarterly focus (and another year for Moody's, which downgraded Verizon last December on the same grounds).

At the same time, the cable guys (Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox and Advance/Newhouse) and Sprint Nextel announce that their quadruple-play joint-venture will start operations mid 2006.
(The announcement is refreshingly straight-forward: they want to offer the quadruple-play, serve the third screen, develop co-branded devices and use their combined retail power. Compare that to Motorola's Gateway announcement, Thomas Anglero's post that James Enck pointed to, as well as the two comments that Anglero incited. Frankly, I would assume that Anglero is right, but it is not new at all.)

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