Telecom Argentina has responded to a nationwide quarantine to curb the spread of coronavirus by announcing a series of benefits for its customers. The operator said it is making available all Fox Premium channels to Flow and Cablevision Digital HD customers until 1 April, as well as over 1,200 hours of children’s content via Discovery Kids, Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon and Disney Channel. The operator will also be giving Cablevision customers free access to Flow content, including over 13,000 hours of on-demand series, documentaries and movies.
In addition, the operator will allow both postpaid and prepaid customers to use WhatsApp and access educational content on Educ.ar plus all government websites without consuming mobile data.
Eliminating paywalls and zero-rating data for selected popular apps is a good short-term strategy for an operator such as Telecom Argentina during the present coronavirus outbreak. Users will certainly have greater demand for these services while they are in relative states of confinement. Offering them is a gesture of goodwill that is certain to resonate very well with subscribers, thereby insuring that when the crisis is past, they will likely have an even more loyal relationship with the operator than previously.
Some subscribers will be out of work or experiencing other economic hardships as a result of the pandemic’s impact, so the free WhatsApp data and the free access to entertainment content will also be welcome for that reason. The educational content will likely be welcomed by parents whose children are out of school and need extra support for learning.
The operator will perhaps want to extend the allowances beyond 1 April, as it is almost certain that the quarantine throughout Argentina will last longer than that. The goals of maintaining goodwill and fostering long-term loyalty may require some more sacrifice—and in a climate where normal revenues are not forthcoming, it is actually no sacrifice.