Are We Ready for Pre-Paid Cable?

Did you know that more people have mobile phones around the world than toilets? While it may seem comical, there’s no disputing the proliferation of mobile phones. Think about it; how many people do you know that don’t have a cell phone? That’s due in part to the fact that pre-paid mobile services have changed the wireless market forever, giving consumers at all income levels the ability to pre-pay for mobile services.In fact, total U.S. prepaid subscriptions surpassed 100 million last June, growing by 12 percent over the previous year, while traditional wireless telephone services with monthly bills flat lined. Moreover, one in three U.S. cell phone owners now chooses to pay as they go.

Low-income consumers aren’t the only ones benefitting from the prepaid boom, as cell phone companies are generating more revenue, which begs the question; why aren’t cable operators offering pre-paid cable in the U.S.?

Traditionally, when customers cannot afford their cable bills, they are simply out of luck and operators are out of customers. However, GLDS has spent the last several years developing pre-paid subscription and transaction-based broadband and has deployed it at several international sites.  The model works, and the opportunity for pre-paid broadband in the U.S. is wide open.

Similar to how pre-paid mobile plans work, operators can offer different plans depending on the product and on a customer’s usage. For example, an operator can fill up a pre-paid bucket with $50 credit for use on video-on-demand, VoIP usage, or even their monthly video subscription – or, set up three different buckets, one for each line of service.  The solutions we’ve built are flexible enough to handle just about any model while protecting monthly subscription fees.  Plus…  how many of your competitors offer it?

Not only does this give consumers the option to pay as they go, but it also protects operators from chasing overdue bills – ultimately protecting their bottom line, boosting profits and setting yourself apart from the competition.

What do you think about prepaid cable? Tell us your thoughts.

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