The man who created the Boost Mobile brand is not one to mince his words, Peter Adderton loves a chat and has a view on anything related to the mobile industry.
In October last year when I sat down with him he was calling on the ACCC to regulate the MVNO space to ensure the non-network carriers stay strong, but that didn’t happen. He also said he would pull out of sponsoring Supercars because the sport was not an equal playing field.
That didn’t happen either – but he’s back, putting his money and brand behind Sydney’s James Courtney this season in what he calls an act of loyalty.
At a frank and open discussion with journalists today, Peter Adderton was pretty clear in his views on 5G.
While Optus, Telstra and now Vodafone begin building their 5G networks, there’s no chance you’ll see Peter rocking the 5G symbol, nor does it seem likely he’s banging down Telstra CEO Andy Penn’s door to get 5G for his customers.
Asked if Boost Mobile would offer 5G Adderton said “we will offer 5G to our customers when it makes a difference in the lives of our customers”
“Today it doesn’t make a difference in the lives of our customers, and it’s not worth the premium cost for those handsets”
Adderton considers the existing 5G handsets overpriced saying “they’ve almost priced the market out”, they are “so expensive, you’ll never see our customer base going on that”
Would Adderton himself buy 5G? He was blunt “I’d say for the premium no”
He described 5G as having “spotty coverage“, though he supported Optus’ style approach which looks at 5G as a home-broadband solution, labelling it an “NBN Killer – to a certain segment of the market that just does not need the NBN”
Looking at how Boost would grow its market and how the Mobile market is likely to change in coming years, Adderton was very excited about the prospect of the eSIM.
eSIM offers customers the chance to simply scan a bar-code and switch carriers. Adderton saw this as a potential gold mine by offering students or travellers a simple way to sample his network with just the scan of a barcode.
He also talked about a future where a “Dynamic eSIM” would allow “Boost to choose the right network for you” – allowing a customer who wanted lots of data at a low price to be on one network, and another customer wanting the super-fast speeds to be on another. This isn’t a reality today, but it’s possible in the future.
And while Samsung and Apple aren’t going full eSIM yet, Motorola have with their folding phone razr. As always, Peter Adderton was pretty frank and blunt in his three word review of that device, describing it as a “pretty shitty phone”.