Most multi-product businesses earn disparate amounts of revenue--and profit--from each discrete product line. In a perhaps-ideal scenario, a mix of young and fast-growing “next product cycle” products as well as mature, cash-producing lines of business contribute to overall earnings, profits and strategy.
Telecom companies are no different, featuring a mix of products, customer segments and growth profiles. And, frequently, profits and revenues from one part of the business are used to subsidize the operation or growth of other segments.
So it is that AT&T’s DirecTV operations might help AT&T grow its Internet access services outside its historic fixed network footprint.
The reason: AT&T plans to serve customers living in apartment complexes outside of its fixed network service area, operating as a competitive local exchange carrier, and offering 100 Mbps Internet access, perhaps using millimeter wave spectrum and fixed wireless.
Obviously, roof rights are required, and many apartment complexes might already have business deals with DirecTV that AT&T can leverage to supply high speed Internet access as well, using fixed wireless to reach some buildings.
The strategy apparently is to use a hub-and-spoke network where a central building is connected directly using optical fiber, while nearby buildings are connected using fixed wireless.