Triple Play of Voice, Data, TV
Is it critical for Qwest to have a triple play of voice, data and television? From a Qwest perspective, we do not believe it is necessary to build your own head-end infrastructure and to create content deals in order to deliver a service that looks a lot like a cable service. Qwest believes fundamentally as a company we are going to embrace partnerships.You look at the Internet as really becoming the ultimate open-delivery network for video. I'm talking about video-on-demand in the much broader sense. For carriers today, when they have video-on-demand, it is whatever content I say you can get at, and it's still a relatively limited library. You look at this and compare it to what happened to Web browsing. When the Internet started with the original Mosaic, the number of Web sites available was quite limited. What the Internet did was basically create a model where anyone could share content. I think that trend is going to happen here in video. Picture a future where instead of putting up a Web site, I can put up the equivalent of a sort of Internet TV station, and that can be available anywhere globally. We're betting on the Internet, and we think in five to 10 years there will be no question that the Internet will be the dominant delivery mechanism for video content. What about your wireless plans? It's really the same story as video. Qwest does not believe that we have to build everything ourselves in order to offer a best-in-class service. We have announced a partnership with Verizon Wireless and we will basically put Verizon Wireless on the equivalent of our store shelf, as we put DirecTV there. Can you tell us about your new qHome service? What we're doing is taking the [Microsoft] Windows Live and the Messenger framework and we're integrating that with our traditional wireline infrastructure. So if you are a Qwest DSL customer and you have your Messenger client going, and you receive a phone call to your wireline phone, you'll see a pop-up in Messenger. By the way, if that individual leaves a voice mail, in addition to the traditional way of retrieving a voice mail, you will get that voice mail as an MP3 in an e-mail in your Windows Live account. You'll also have full access to call logs and your other services. So, it is really all about this idea of simplification and starting to tie services together. Now, that's really just a first step, but think of how you can start to leverage that with the DirecTV partnership and the Verizon Wireless partnership. It starts to tie all these services very nicely together in ways that others who even have the services themselves are not doing at this point.
We have a wonderful partnership with DirecTV. However, as DirecTV evolves, they are also starting to incorporate video-on-demand on their higher-end set tops, particularly the high-definition TV accounts where they have an Ethernet interface. We are doing the same thing. We are really starting to enable a video model that is going to start leveraging the Internet.