Verizon will likely use the slogan “COMP’D” to sell a new wireless over-the-top video service that will rely on sponsored data deals with major advertisers and programmers to compete with cable and satellite TV, a trademark filing obtained by The Donohue Report indicates.
The telco, which closed its $4.4 billion acquisition of AOL on Tuesday, is reserving the right to use “COMP’D” and “COMP’D DATA” to “provision data to subscribers to promote the goods and services of others,” according to trademark applications it filed on June 19. Verizon filed a separate trademark that features an LTE symbol inside a gift box.
Verizon’s sponsored-data strategy may remind industry observers of deals that Comcast predecessor Tele-Communications Inc. announced nearly 20 years ago with Bank of America and Intuit. Former TCI chief John Malone told attendees at the 1997 Western Show cable convention that “t-commerce” pacts with advertisers would help subsidize the DCT-5000, an advanced digital set-top created by General Instrument (now part of Arris).
Software integration challenges involving Microsoft’s Windows CE operating system thwarted Malone’s Rolls Royce of set-tops, and TCI’s subsidized interactive TV services never materialized.
But Verizon appears to be on the path to using sponsored data deals to subsidize not only customer premise equipment ranging from smartphones and tablets to LTE gateways, but niche Ultra HD content delivered to connected TVs and mobile devices, including sports, kids and foreign language programming.