Verizon has done so little with the Yahoo brand since its acquisition three years ago that you might not even know that the venerable web services company is actually owned by the big US operator, but it looks like it’s on its way. to change. with Verizon in the process of creating a new second tier wireless service provider.
Verizon today announced the creation of Yahoo mobile, a new service that will run on Verizon’s network and hopes to use name recognition to attract more consumers into Verizon’s fold.
Yahoo Mobile will only offer one plan: a 4G LTE plan that will offer unlimited texting, conversations and data, as well as unlimited access to the mobile hotspot for a single device and Yahoo Mail Pro without ads, all for $ 40 per month. In comparison, a prepaid unlimited plan from Verizon costs $ 65 per month, while AT&T charges $ 45 per month.
As The Verge points out, however, this looks like a somewhat lazy attempt on Verizon’s part to “recycle the Yahoo brand,” since it is in fact just a renowned version of Visible, another prepaid derivative MVNO that Verizon launched just over a year ago, originally targeting users with unlocked iPhones before expanding into direct device sales. The Yahoo Mobile and Visible websites have a very different coat of paint, but underneath the content and information there is virtually identical, and Yahoo Mobile even offers the Visible-branded phone insurance plan.
Verizon managed to acquire Yahoo almost four years ago for less than $ 4.8 billion – a price that is significantly lower than its valuation of $ 125 billion after several hacking incidents resulting in significant price discounts. demand.
While Verizon technically acquired all of Yahoo’s major assets under the deal, including web services like Flickr and Tumblr, what it was actually looking for was Yahoo’s advertising technology; he sold Flickr and Tumblr and left everything else on the shelf. In fact, Yahoo’s biggest announcements since the acquisition have been payments for the aforementioned data breaches.
Why Yahoo Mobile?
Large telecom operators frequently split off from smaller subsidiary brands in order to diversify their businesses and try out new ideas without risking watering down their big brand. Verizon has long struggled to be viewed as a somewhat unfriendly carrier to consumers, so other services like Visible and Yahoo mobile let the company attract a different audience with a more trendy branding and a simpler pricing structure.
Even if Visible seemed to target a younger audience, Yahoo mobile could be an attempt to attract less tech-savvy Gen Xers and Baby Boomers who still have a warm and hazy feeling about the Yahoo brand from the early days of the internet, not to mention the few hundred million people who still use Yahoo Mail to this day. Verizon is no doubt hoping that the added benefit of an ad-free Yahoo Mail Pro experience will be enough to attract at least some of these users.
As for the Yahoo Mobile service, if it is parallel Visible, users will enjoy the same kind of second-tier service, meaning speeds could be slower than on a Verizon plan, especially at peak times, and the unlimited hotspot feature will be capped at 5 Mbps. , which makes it unsuitable for more than the most basic use. Needless to say, you’re not going to approach Verizon’s 5G network with this plan, either.
However, not only will Yahoo Mobile include a Yahoo Mail Pro account, but you need a Yahoo account to sign up for the service, which is set up using the new Yahoo Mobile app if you just want to use your existing (unlocked) iPhone, although it looks like Yahoo Mobile will also have phones available at the purchase.