EE targets rivals’ customers with 4G product launches

The UK’s largest mobile operator EE is targeting rival networks’ customers whose contracts are about to expire with a host of promotions and services as it looks to exploit its first to market with 4G advantage.

The operator today (3 July) unveiled a mobile payments service Cash on Tap which uses NFC technology, aimed at furthering uptake of its 4G services.

The announcements included the launch of “double-speed 4G” in 12 cities across the UK in the coming days which will allow subscribers to connect multiple devices from one connection.

EE also announced the launch of “Shared 4GEE Plans” that target the family market by letting “lead shares” – typically parents – connect up to five devices to a single plan, which offers up to 20GB of data.

The operator also announced the launch of pay-as-you-go (PAYG) mobile broadband plans, which lets customers access EE’s 4G network via a laptop dongle, as a means of attracting subscribers from rival networks.

In addition, the mobile operator also announced a summer promotion offering double-speed 4G and greater data allowances for consumers who sign up to a 24 month 4G contract before 30th September 2013.

Pippa Dunn, EE’s CMO, says the launches are geared towards “getting people to know 4G”, and identified the dongle launch as a means of attracting rival network providers’ customers whose contracts are about to expire.

“This is a way to show people that don’t want to sign up to a full contract the benefits of 4G and the speed of our network,” she says.

Stephen Day, EE’s chief of brand, says the decision to offer services that would appeal to customers still contracted to rival networks was based on consumer feedback.

“The EE brand [plus for 4G services] enabled us to attract [new customers] in a way that the Orange and T-Mobile brands weren’t,” he told Marketing Week.

The launch of the new services will be supported with a further cross-media marketing push, also fronted by Hollywood star Kevin Bacon, with a further emphasis on the speed of the network, plus the enhancements 4G brings to consumers’ lives, according to Day.

He also said the roll out of EE’s Cash on Tap mobile payments service was a further demonstration of EE as a “progressive technology brand”.

Cash on Tap will launch in partnership with MasterCard available via a downloadable app. The service, which uses NFC technoogy, will be accepted at over 230,000 outlets nationwide, including McDonald’s, Boots, and Greggs.

Voadafone and O2 are expected to launch their 4G services, backed by multi-million pound marketing campaigns, later in the summer.

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