BT overhauls consumer business with bid to combine mobile and broadband

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Such a service could theoretically come into its own for users in those remaining parts of the United Kingdom that receive fixed broadband speeds of under 10Mbps, where adding a 4G connection - note that EE now claims to cover 90% of the United Kingdom population geographically - would bump up their speeds to over both the Ofcom and government definitions of superfast broadband.

For Smart Home lovers, EE will offer compatibility with all the major Smart Home infrastructures including Hive, Google, Homekit and Alexa.

The new Consumer Business Unit comprises BT, EE and PlusNet and will see the launch of a series of converged products and service, including new streaming partnerships.

BT has announced BT Plus, which brings together home broadband, mobile and Wi-Fi capabilities into one "converged" plan - with a single bill for all of them.

EE is also showcasing a prototype for a new category of converged broadband - EE Hybrid Broadband technology.

Marc Allera, CEO of BT's consumer division, today told journalists that the company needed to recognise and address its past failings, and change the way it deals with customers to ensure they always feel valued. Wi-Fi and mobile will combine to give BT customers the most reliable connectivity in the United Kingdom, both on the go and indoors.

In contrast, BT's star performer, EE, had one of the lowest levels of complaints in broadband and mobile. BT's Keep Connected Promise means that if ever there is a fault with a customer's home broadband, BT enables unlimited data on their BT mobile plans and will send a 4G Wi-Fi Mini Hub with unlimited data so the customer can stay connected while their broadband is repaired or installed.

"We're beginning our journey to create one converged, smart network built on our world-leading fixed and mobile networks - going beyond 4G, 5G, Wi-Fi and ultrafast broadband to seamlessly connect our customers wherever they are to the things that matter most to them".

Last week, the former state monopoly said it will slash 13,000 jobs, having reported flat or declining sales in all areas of its business - except in BT Consumer, with revenues up 3 per cent to £5bn and EE, where sales increased 4 per to £5.3bn.

While it has already stripped out costs by integrating back-office functions, BT will now provide customers with a more joined-up offering, backed by a marketing campaign and a move to improve its customer service reputation by bringing its call centres back to Britain and Ireland by 2020. "More importantly the new structure and strategy provides better clarity on the future direction of the consumer segment which has been in limbo for some time". As part of this, BT customers will enjoy a range of new experiences this year - from the latest content to new app experiences that give customers more flexibility on how and where they watch their favourite content.

And what will matter a lot will be TV content and the new move will see BT TV become the first United Kingdom company to include the Amazon Prime Video app as part of the EPG delivered through its set-top box. It also hopes to put new, digitised customer service options in place.

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