BETHPAGE, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE:CVC) today announced the upcoming launch of Freewheel, a new low-cost all-WiFi phone service providing unlimited data, talk and text. Harnessing the rapid growth and unparalleled capabilities of WiFi, Freewheel is the first all-WiFi service to be introduced by a cable provider. It will be offered with the Motorola Moto G smartphone and works exclusively over WiFi. The service will work anywhere in the world where WiFi is accessible, and will operate only when the device is connected to a WiFi signal. Freewheel customers will have automatic access to the Optimum WiFi network of 1.1 million hotspots.
Freewheel will be available for purchase nationwide starting next month at Freewheel.com. The service will cost $29.95 per month or $9.95 per month for Cablevision’s Optimum Online customers, which is up to 80 percent less expensive than leading cellular offerings.1 The service comes with no annual contract. Freewheel will be available exclusively on the Motorola Moto G, a popular Android device that was recently rated the “best low-cost smartphone” by The Wall Street Journal.2 The device will be offered for purchase at a heavily discounted price of $99.95.
“Cablevision recognizes the growing shift to WiFi-driven consumer electronic devices and services,” said James L. Dolan, chief executive officer of Cablevision. “As a company, we are focused on providing services for these consumers and solidifying our position as the New York market’s premier connectivity company. Freewheel is the next leap forward in the advancement of the connected lifestyle, and our Optimum WiFi network and the prevalence of WiFi nationwide serves as its foundation.”
Cablevision has made a significant investment in building its robust WiFi network, which the company began deploying in 2007 just as smartphones were being introduced. Today, Optimum WiFi is available at 1.1 million access points and includes both indoor and outdoor locations as well as its expanding network of residential hotspots. This network covers the New York metropolitan area, Cablevision’s home operating territory and where Freewheel will be heavily marketed. Freewheel allows consumers to take maximum advantage of WiFi connectivity as it becomes more ubiquitous and provides automatic access to the Optimum WiFi network.
“There has been a dramatic shift in how consumers use their mobile devices; today, it’s all about data, and WiFi is now preferred and clearly superior to cellular,” said Kristin Dolan, chief operating officer of Cablevision. “Freewheel is powered by the strength of our Optimum WiFi network integrated with a high-quality device to deliver a breakthrough service for truly unlimited data, talk and text without the high costs imposed by cellular providers.”
WiFi is already the dominant technology for mobile data communications. Cisco Systems Inc.’s latest yearly index report found that 93 percent of all data traffic generated by mobile or portable devices in the U.S. was carried via WiFi.3 At a time when cellular spending is on the rise, with American households spending nearly 50 percent more on cellphone bills in 2013 compared to 20074 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Freewheel provides the market with a new, affordable choice for unlimited data.
Freewheel is a great option for people who:
- Spend their day in WiFi-rich environments, including colleges, offices and homes
- Overspend on data or constantly worry about staying within their expensive and restrictive cellular data limits
- Live in densely populated areas or other locales that suffer from poor cellular reception
- Are budget conscious or on a fixed income
- Are looking for the best first device for their children
- Do not want to sign multi-year contracts.
Freewheel will be available for purchase next month on Freewheel.com. It also comes with access to attractive international calling plans, a money back guarantee and no annual contracts.
Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE:CVC) is a leading media and telecommunications company, serving millions of households and businesses throughout the greater New York area. Providing quality products that keep customers connected, Cablevision offers Optimum-branded digital cable television, high-speed Internet and voice services as well as Optimum WiFi, the nation's most robust WiFi network. Cablevision’s Lightpath subsidiary is a premier provider of integrated business communications solutions for larger companies. Through its local media and programming properties – News 12 Networks and Newsday Media Group – Cablevision also delivers news and information created specifically for the communities it serves. Additional information about Cablevision is available at www.cablevision.com.
|1||Freewheel at $9.95 monthly vs. Single Line Plan from Verizon Wireless w/ Edge Discount at $60 per month including 2GB of data. Does not include device cost, taxes/fees, and international calling. Pricing as of 1/25/15.|
|2||Stern, Joanna. “The Best Smartphones You Can Buy Right Now,” Wall Street Journal. November 25, 2014. Web.|
|3||Cisco Visual Networking Index: Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, 2013–2018.|
|4||Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, 2007 and 2013, Consumer Expenditure Survey, [January 22, 2015] [http://www.bls.gov/cex/].|