4G Pricing Trends

Tariff Consultancy highlights the trends in 4G LTE pricing. Since 4G services were first launched from the end of 2009 onwards as a premium service, they have now become the standard for mobile data applications.

Although 4G services were launched as a price premium by most MNOs, by 2014 the majority of 4G LTE plans are now integrated within a broader mobile data tariff structure with pricing based mainly on monthly data allowance, but with some MNOs offering higher access speeds if the user opts for a larger data allowance. Rather than use 4G LTE services as a premium service most MNOs are now offering 4G LTE for free to maintain an existing mobile data price point. Price stability is now the objective rather than premium pricing.

The new TCL 2014 4G LTE Pricing Strategies reportreviews the development of 4G LTE pricing for the four key regions of the EU, non-EU, Asia Pacific & Middle East regions.

The report also examines the changes in 4G LTE pricing for 15 key MNOs worldwide since they launched 4G services. In each case there has been an increase in the number of packages with a range of entry level pricing now being offered as well as prepaid options by many operators

Increasingly MNOs are finding that the marketing of 4G LTE services remains challenging. The range of pricing models being deployed indicates that MNOs are experimenting to find the optimum package. 4G LTE is becoming a subset of an overall mobile data bundle.

MNOs are starting to recognize that a successful mass market 4G LTE offer needs to become more than a bundle of access speed and data allowance and contain extra features (such as content, roaming, Wi-Fi or smartphone upgrade bundles) if a premium price point is to be maintained in the long term. Just having a 4G LTE network alone is no longer enough.

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine
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