Altice Plans Cellphone Service Costing $20-$30 As Providers Undercut Wireless Carriers


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Altice USA has bolstered its Wi-Fi network in advance of its new mobile-phone service and aims to push some mobile traffic onto those hot spots when consumers are away from home.

A new player is about to enter the crowded U.S. wireless market, pitching monthly unlimited data that costs half as much as rivals.

The catch? It is a -television company.

Altice USA Inc. is preparing to launch a mobile service likely to cost between $20 and $30 a phone, according to people familiar with the matter. This summer it will join rivals Comcast Corp. and Charter Communications Inc. in trying to persuade Americans to get their wireless service from their providers by promising lower prices.

The new service, likely to be called Altice Mobile ATUS, -0.94% , will run on Sprint Corp.’s S, +0.72% mobile network and relies on customers’ in-home Wi-Fi and the company’s network of hot spots throughout the urban markets it serves, including New York City. The company plans to test the service with its employees in the coming weeks, the people said.

Altice, which has 3.3 million TV subscribers and 4.1 million internet customers, has recently said the company is on track to launch its mobile service this summer. A spokeswoman said pricing isn’t set and the “go-to-market plans are still in development.”

Cable providers are hoping wireless service will make their existing customers less likely to cut the cord and generate additional revenue. Wireless carriers like Verizon Communications Inc. VZ, -0.99% and AT&T Inc. T, -1.05% , meanwhile, are betting the advent of faster, 5G networks will enable them to offer wireless broadband inside homes that sidelines companies.
The Wall Street Journal

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