Sprint Corporation 1 Identification of Issues Responsible Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Sprint Corporation

(1) Identification of issues responsible for failure of marketing services strategies of Sprint Corp in meeting customer expectations:

Sprint's 4G network offering wireless broadband services Xohm with download speeds in the range of 2 Mbps to 4 Mbps was the first commercial network across USA to use mobile WiMax technology. However because of limited availability of devices that is able to access the network, Sprint was compelled to use conventional broadband and wireless business models. This move brought the company in direct competition with the present broadband services and 3G services and the product offering was not actually satisfying an unmet customer need and hence the prospects of the service remained narrow. (Reardon, 2008)

Sprint is targeting customers of existing cable and DSL cable providers with mobility. However with a small range of devices supporting WiMax currently, majority of the people purchasing the service will get similar mobility as offered by Data cards plugged in their Laptops and not wider range of mobility across the town. They can only receive signals when they are in the vicinity of a hotspot like airport, library. (Reardon, 2008)

On the price front too the service is not offering any great value. The home service mandates users to procure $79 WiMax modem that costs $25 upfront but its final price will be $35 monthly. The mobile service comes for $59 WiMax with a wireless card for laptops with a starting price of $30 that rises to $45 after a period of 6 months. This combo service that lets bandwidth share among other users at home with mobility comes at an initial price of $50 per month and rises to $65 per month. The pricing is at par with other providers like Baltimore Comcast offering 6 Mbps downloads that $43 and Verizon Communications offering 3 Mbps DSL service for $30 a month and hence there is hardly any differentiation on this aspect as well. The service availability is also limited to Baltimore with more cities to follow suit, but its people in the suburban areas will definitely be out of its range. (Reardon, 2008)

Proposed steps to be taken: Sprint's strongest asset is that it was the first company to roll out its all-fiber optic network. The company installed fiber optic cable along its routes which was a process started by SPCC as the transmission medium functioned at very high frequencies and used digital signals unaffected by electronic interference. Unlike majority of its rivals, Sprint has a presence across the entire value chain of telecom like local phone, long distance, Internet and wireless operations. What the company can do is cross-sell its services to its existing customers through a judicious bundling of its various offering. It has collaboration with Nortel Networks Corp to install a new switching technology -- the packet technology which it can bring into service. This service has advantages of allowing additional traffic on telecommunication lines by placing all its phone lines on the packet system. This would be a huge saving for the company and permit it to offer greater services to its customers. (Funding Universe, 2012)

(2) Implementation Plan Suggestion:

Currently, Sprint operates in various spectrums via its association with Clearwire 2.5GHz spectrum. An ideal implementation would be when Sprint pools companies to install a new network equipment and software that combines multiple spectrum bands or airwaves on a uniform multimode base station. This will help the base stations to allow for flexibility in offering new technologies using any of the 1.9GHz, 800 MHz or 2.5GHz as also other spectrum bands. This implementation of multimode technology across the Sprint network has been designed to (i) improve service by improving its quality, data sped, enhancing coverage. (ii) build a network flexibility ensuring that the most effective expansion of 4G (iii) lower operating costs through delivery of capital efficiency, reduction of lease, savings on roaming and improving efficiency. (Sprint, 2010)

Besides launching of next generation Push-to-Talk -- PTT with broadband capabilities and unification of multimode chipsets into a range of devices like smartphones, touch screens and other broadband devices. Through an arrangement with Network Vision, Sprint will repurpose some of its 800 MHz spectrum for CSMA service and this will in turn enhance coverage, especially the in-building experience for customers. Increasing the density through higher spectrum density results in lesser dropped calls and a better network experience for the customers; thereby increasing reliability. With Sprint's unique distinction of being the first to have complete digital wireless network, the first to upgrade towards EVDO and the latest being the first company to offer 4G services, this will pave the way for a better implementation plan as it has the necessary technology upgrades. (Sprint, 2010)

Besides, Sprint will be the first to deploy a common and converged mobile network making its 3G services more robust with enhancement of 4G technology options. This implementation will benefit Sprint a great deal as a gradual shift is likely to occur when customers demand increased data-centric applications with PTT usage and a new phenomenon has been seen with wireless data traffic in showing an increasing trend compared to voice traffic for the first time in U.S. history. (Sprint, 2010)

(3) Competitor Analysis:

Sprint came into being when the Sprint Corporation bought out Nextel Communications during 2005 for about 35 billion USD setting up Sprint Nextel Corporation. Thereafter the company acquired one of its biggest affiliates, Nextel partners for 6 billion USD with a view to gain capabilities to provide Nextel wireless services to areas with less density of population. While the Tier 1 competitors of Sprint are "Verizon Communications -- VZ, AT & T. Inc., Qwest Communications and the Vodafone Group, its Tier 2 competitors are Atlantic Tele-Network -- ATNI, Cincinati Bell Inc. -- CBB and General Communications Inc. -- GCI." (Better Trades, 2010)

(4) Strategic Plan proposal to improve service or product:

On the technology front, Sprint shall have to upgrade its network capabilities with greater investment creating additional wireless cell sites and add new equipment to the network thereby delivering greater coverage and network capacity to offer service to its customers. Sprint have to concentrate on its core business as the company has been struggling to be abreast with larger competitors, but is expected to attain sizeable gains in customer loyalty by the middle of 2007 which can be done by stepping up the investments in enhancing its wireless network. Sprint must lower its rate of cancellation. (St. Johns University, 2010)

The company is ranked third in wireless carrier, based on subscriptions in the U.S. after Cingular and Verizon Wireless. It must step us its customer service quality as it has been faring badly on this score. The company was placed in the last rank among the five largest wireless subscribers in major metropolitan regions during the course of a survey that questioned subscribers on call quality, problems in billing and the manner in which their cell phone companies answered to questions or complaints. (St. Johns University, 2010)

Sprint is ranked third across U.S. In the wireless carrier segment having 51.7 million customers and running behind Verizon who reported to have served 55 million and Cingular who have 57 million customers. As regards churn rates are concerned, the company is also behind its competitors with the maximum churn rates which 2.4%. Sprint has to improve on this aspect as well as the best churn rates was reported by Verizon 1.13% followed by Cingular 1.7%- an improvement of 2.2% earlier. It is a fact that with increased penetration of wireless services, subscriber growth will be gradually difficult and it here that Sprint will have to concentrate on improving service efficiencies and removal of technology glitches. (St. Johns University, 2010)

In the years to come, Sprint shall have to differentiate itself from its competitors. By far…

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