Layer3 TV, the Denver-based next-gen cable operator, confirmed that it’s preparing to take a bite out of the Big Apple.
“We are going to be coming next to New York City and to the New York region,” Jeff Binder, the company’s CEO, said in a discussion with Layer3 TV’s Eric Kuhn that was streamed Monday on Facebook Live in conjunction with the Aspen Ideas Festival in Colorado
FierceCable reported in May that Layer3 TV was making plans to launch in New York.
Layer3 TV has not announced when it will launch services in the New York region, but the move will likely put the MVPD in direct competition there with pay TV providers that include Verizon Communications, RCN Corp., Charter Communications (via its acquisition of Time Warner Cable), and Altice USA, which delivers service under the “Optimum” brand in the former Cablevision Systems territories.
In Washington, D.C., Layer3 TV is currently bundling TV and broadband bundle and pitching a standalone broadband offering (under the “pureFiber” brand) by reselling high-speed internet services that run on Verizon’s network there. It’s not known if Layer3 TV has similar plans for its launch in NYC.
Layer3 TV, which recently added voice-based navigation through an integration with Amazon’s Alexa platform, also sells TV service in Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, and Longmont, Colo., with plans to broaden access to Denver. Layer3 TV has not announced subscriber numbers.
Binder also used the discussion to talk up Layer3 TV’s customer service strategy, as it uses various outlets, including social media, text, chat, email and the old phone to communicate with new and potential customers.
Binder said he also uses social media on occasion to bypass the traditional customer service infrastructure to reach out directly to customers to answer questions or to resolve issues.
Although the small but growing cord-cutting trend has paved the way for skinny bundles from so-called virtual MVPDs, Layer3 TV has opted to go with a full-freight, concierge-style service that tries to offer a better experience, down to the customer service layer, than what consumers are accustomed to getting from traditional cable operators.
“There’s no question that consumers are tired of really ugly experiences in the cable space and they’re leaving,” Binder said. “A lot of time they’re leaving not because they don’t like TV; they’re leaving because of the cost and the hassle associated with that relationship.”
Binder also discussed how Layer3 TV’s guide uses machine learning and algorithms to help predict and present shows and programs that customers might be interested in viewing.
“About 85% of Layer3 TV’s subscribers actually find content they're looking for without having to use any of the traditional guide metrics and services that we’ve traditionally gotten used to in TV.”