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Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Deciphering the Orange Sosh proposition

I've just seen that FT/Orange France has announced a new brand/proposition called Sosh, aimed at "hyper-connected" youth segment, majoring heavily on data and bundled SMS.

I'm a bit confused by the press release though - it's not obvious that the 2-hour, 5-hour or 24/7 product names refer to telephony minutes, or data time allowed online. There is a reference to "All of the Sosh offers are commitment-free, and they give users access to all of their content and digital services, including social networks, videos, e-mail, internet and VoIP." ... but I'm not sure how that squares with 2/5 hours. It would be bizarre if you could use Facebook and Twitter for 2 hours a day, as it's not clear how long a "session" lasts, especially if you've got a background app open on a phone sending keep-alives.

On the other hand, €20 a month sounds quite a lot for a 500MB/120 mins plan that doesn't include a handset, even if it does allow you to use VoIP and Orange's WiFi hotspots. Same for the 1GB/300mins for €40 plan.

Interestingly, handsets *are* available, bought separately, and with 12/24 month payment plans. That's very interesting as it fits in with some earlier posts of mine about the accountancy grey-zone of handset subsidy/loan repayments being counted as part of ARPU.
The press release also has logos from Youtube, Twitter and Facebook, as well as Orange's 50%-owned Dailymotion videp service. It's not clear if these are official endorsements, if there are commercial agreements in place, special content/deals/pricing or anything else.

Overall, it's all a bit confusing - possibly because there's less English-language info published about what is initially a France-only service. Hopefully, we'll get some clarity on this soon.

Edit: mystery solved. Apparently French mobile operators often quote talk-time in hours and not minutes. Still seems weird that they're calling Sosh a proposition for hyper-connected, social-networked youth, and still using voice as the primary way of segmenting the pricing tiers.

1 comment:

Tariq said...

Please bear in mind that mobile plans are quite expensive in France, compared to the UK.
The Sosh (And B&You offering from Bouygues Telecom) are set to prevent customers to flee to the upcoming 'Free mobile' MNO (To be launched in Jan 2012: Free is a successulf ISP targeting digital natives)
Sosh and ByTel are targeting the very same segment, but have wrapped their offers as Youth-friendly.
The price points are lower than the ones offered by premium brand plans, Sosh plans are replicating traditional plans, but when simple tiers and buckets of data.
B&You is replicating ByTel Neo plans with so called 'unlimited' calls, but offering's price points are among the lowest in the french market