Many have asked why Everything Everywhere decided to launch a third brand (EE) rather than merging the two existing companies - Orange and T-Mobile - into one and infusing 4G goodness into it.
Carrie Pawsey, Senior analyst of telecoms strategy at Ovum, says that the timing is right for launching a third brand that is differentiated by being a 4G-only service, but from a strategic and cost position, this is not a sustainable long term solution.
She adds that the quicker the two legacy brands disappear, the better it will be for the business. In a nutshell, the three-brand situation is only temporary. Pawsey also believes that EE is going to position itself as a provider of the best of both the wired and wireless worlds.
In doing so, the company will hope to surpass the likes of TalkTalk and Virgin Media. We believe that EE could potentially become a quad-play player by offering, as TalkTalk does, Youview services in the near future.
So when will Orange and T-Mobile be phased out? We suspect that this will happen in 2014 when EE’s UK 4G network will be fully operational.
It will also be interesting to find out whether Everything Everywhere will offer smart routers that double up as femtocells to its fixed-line customers in order to ramp up its 4G coverage nationwide.