Survey finds consumers prefer bundled communications services from telecoms

By a 2-to-1 margin, consumers would prefer to bundle communications services with telecommunication companies compared to cable companies if they had the choice, according to the second annual Telecom-Cable Industry Satisfaction Study from CFI Group.

However, cable companies provide twice as many consumers surveyed with bundled communications as do telecom companies.

The survey of more than 1200 households examined customer satisfaction for video, broadband Internet access and wireless communications using the methodology of the University of Michigan’s American Customer Satisfaction Index. It found that customer satisfaction provides telecom companies with a competitive advantage. As the telecoms roll out high-speed fiber services across their networks, they will be able to challenge cable company dominance in bundles, high speed Internet and video.

The study identified high rates and poor customer service as the two biggest reasons customers would consider leaving a cable provider of communications bundles. For telecom companies, customers cite the need for faster access as a primary reason for switching. Video services like AT&T’s U-Verse IPTV and Verizon’s FiOS are beginning to make their mark, and 2 percent of survey respondents are already using video services from a telecom company.

Telecom companies own national wireless carriers, giving them another potential advantage in the battle of bundled services. Only 8 percent of surveyed consumers have bundles that include wireless telephone, and more consumers are dropping landlines altogether in favor of wireless telephony. The study suggests that this presents an opportunity for telecoms and another challenge for cable companies.

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