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posted by martyb on Sunday September 20 2020, @10:04PM   Printer-friendly
from the future-plan:-why-not-both? dept.

Exclusive: AT&T considers cellphone plans subsidized by ads:

(Reuters) - AT&T Inc T.N is considering offering wireless phone plans partially subsidized by advertising as soon as a year from now, Chief Executive John Stankey said in an interview on Tuesday.

[...] The consideration, which has not been previously disclosed, underscores AT&T's commitment to the advertising business as the U.S. phone carrier reviews its portfolio to identify assets to sell in order to reduce its debt load. AT&T is considering selling its advertising-technology unit Xandr, sources familiar with the matter have told Reuters.

"I believe there's a segment of our customer base where given a choice, they would take some load of advertising for a $5 or $10 reduction in their mobile bill," Stankey said.

Various companies including Inc AMZN.O, Virgin Mobile USA and Sprint's Boost Mobile have tested advertising supported phone services since the early 2000s but they have not caught on. AT&T is hoping that better advertising targeting could revive the idea.

The planned launch of an ad-supported version of AT&T's video-streaming service HBO Max next year will serve as a "foundational element" that will provide new advertising inventory, and would be key to new phone plans supported by ads, Stankey said without offering details.

[...] AT&T engineers are creating "unified customer identifiers," Stankey said. Such technology would allow marketers to identify users across multiple devices and serve them relevant advertising.

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  • (Score: 5, Informative) by Runaway1956 on Monday September 21 2020, @12:53AM

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Monday September 21 2020, @12:53AM (#1054163) Journal

    I seem to vaguely recall that commercials were every half hour, when I was very small. That is, Mickey Mouse and Romper Room and Captain Kangaroo would run approximately 30 minutes without interruption. At the half hour, there would be from 3 to 5 commercials, which no one cared about, because we were running to the bathroom, or fetching drinks.

    Then, commercials went to every quarter hour. If memory serves me correctly, you still had 3 to 5 commercials on the half hour, but only 1 or 2 shorter commercials at the quarter hour.

    By the time I reached junior high school, commercial time had grown longer, but still sort of sticking to the quarter hour schedule. There was no longer any difference between the 1/2 hour and 1/4 hour commercials.

    So, not later than 1971, commercials had become intrusive and onerous. By that time, a one hour show was serving up less than 45 minutes of "entertainment". Of course, by this time, I had already decided that most of the entertainment really wasn't entertaining. I much preferred to get outside, or curl up with a good book.

    We've finally beat Medicare! - Houseplant in Chief
    Starting Score:    1  point
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