When I look at these two companies I see nothing but a commodity. You can brush away the airy fairy marketing fluff and the services are pretty much indistiguishable. The phones are the same, the monthly rates are comparable, and having been a customer at both companies I can say that the service is very good with both.
What differs between the two is that WIND does a better job with financing phones through its WINDtab plan, and has a wider service area. Either way, these differentiators may not impact a large chunk of their customers. I think the two companies have done an excellent job in training their customer base to wait for Christmas and late August/early September for the deep discount sales that will inevitably appear. Like clockwork at Christmas Mobilicity will cut its rates in half and WIND will follow in mid-December.
There have been signs that their business model has not been too profitable. The most visible was the rapid churn of Chief Executives at WIND and the active lobbying for more foreign ownership by WIND. To me, these are signs of weakness and not strength in the business.
In short, I think that these companies have to do a rethink of their businesses and decide how they can truly take on Bell, Telus and Rogers. My idea, and its a stretch, is to come up with mini-networks covering university campuses only, to lure students who live in the dorms to their plans. WIND is targeting university towns, but I would stay even narrower in my reach.
I seriously don’t know what Mobilicity is trying to do other than compete purely on price by cherry picking a few cities. I don’t think that this will work in the long run.
Tomorrow I will start looking at just how competitive their pricing is.