With the ‘all clear’ given by the authorities for the merger of Vodafone and TPG, we sat down for a quick chat with Business Principal, Craig Macdonald, to discuss the changing communications landscape and what this means for C2 Communications and the market as a whole.
Q:Craig, the ruling by the Federal Court to allow the merger of Vodafone and TPG must have some immediate and longer-term implications for our market, how do you see this playing out?
A: Immediately, there will be greater competitive outcomes for consumers, particularly in the 5G space. Already we have seen release of the Vodafone 5G network with expectation for hundreds of more sites to be live over the next few months.
Over the longer term with a 3rd Tier 1 player providing a competitive challenge to both Optus and Telstra. Ultimately however the consumer is the winner, with another large mobile provider offering greater price competition and product bundling.
Q: What do you think this decision means for Telstra and Optus?
A: Telstra has always had a stronghold in both the mobile and fibre networks. Vodafone/TPG will certainly shake this space up and create greater competition for both Telstra and Optus with their fully integrated telco offering. I would expect the new combined entity will roll out new innovative products and will drive pricing down for both mobile and fibre services.
Q: What are the benefits of migrating to the new 5G technology for business customers?
A: We’ve already seen glimpses of what 5G technology is capable of, with expected speeds to be up to 1Gbps. Despite the costs of upgrading mobile networks I think mobile carriers will be keen for users to migrate to 5G services. As such the offers for 5G upgrade will be enticing, and particularly for business customers, who I suspect will use 5G as an excellent failover for fibre networks – possibly without a reduction in speed.
Q:Do you believe that market pricing for 5G will be at a premium or will it be comparable to current mobile data pricing?
A: Whilst there’s been some early indications that 5G may end up as a premium product, I don’t see this being a sustainable market position, particularly with the addition of the merged entity in the market driving prices down.
Q: As C2 Comms is an Integrated Service Provider what role do you see 5G playing for our customers?
A: We see this as a great opportunity to return to the mobile space for our customers, and to provide an offering that includes VoIP and broadband, coupled with 5G mobile for both mobility users and also as a redundant to fibre. I think it’s an exciting time for C2 Comms as our customers will benefit greatly from these changes.
Q: When do you think our wholesale offering will be made available?
A: We estimate that the availability of the wholesale mobile services will be after Q3 2020.
Q:The supply and deployment of 5G networks is a hot topic globally at the moment making news headlines in much of Europe, Asia and the US. Would you like to weigh-in on the ongoing debate about Huawei’s 5G network infrastructure being banned by the Federal Government?