The budding smart home industry has prompted some of the biggest names in tech to either develop their own products or partner up with other companies in the field. As the fourth largest cell phone carrier in the country, Kansas-based Sprint is lagging in cell phone subscribers, and so to help boost profits, it is turning its attention to non-core products, namely smart home devices. Sprint’s move involves partnering with smart home company Vivint to sell Vivint’s devices in Sprint’s brick-and-mortar stores, according to a Wave7 Research report.
The Sprint-Vivint partnership initially calls for Sprint to begin selling Vivint products at 16 stores in Missouri, Utah, Arizona, and Ohio. By the end of the year, Vivint products will be in 80 stores nationwide, allowing the carrier to combine Vivint smart home devices with Sprint phones. As for what kinds of devices are involved, Vivint sells everything from smart security cameras to thermostats and garage door controllers.
“From time to time, Sprint will run trials in a limited number of markets on different rate plans, products and/or services to see how customers respond,” said Kathleen Dunleavy, Sprint manager of corporate communications. “Currently, Sprint is conducting such a trial and selling Vivint smart home services in a handful of retail stores across the country. As with all trials, once it is over, we will analyze the results and determine next steps.”
The basic bundle of smart home devices from Vivint will set you back $40, including cameras, motion sensors, and more. Expanding the service to include security products such as doorbell cameras will cost $50. The company has been around since 1999, but it wasn’t until Vivint was sold to Blackstone in 2012 for $2 billion that its products began gaining traction.
The Wave7 report indicated that the partnership will expose Sprint’s services to a wider array of consumers as door-to-door Vivint representatives will attempt to sell the carrier’s plans along with its products.
“In addition to a wide array of smart home gear (cameras, motion sensors, etc.), the offering provides two MRC (monthly recurring charge) options,” Wave7 wrote.
This isn’t Vivint’s first partnership of this type. The smart home company teamed up with retail giant Best Buy earlier this year to sell smart home consultations to customers. That initiative launched over the summer.
Sprint has also been exploring ways to bring in more consumers, launching the 1Million Project, which will provide smartphones, laptops, and tablets to students in low-income families.