Ok, it's *almost* time to make predictions for 2019. But first we have to take a painful look back at my predictions for 2018. Let's see how well I did! (This isn't going to be pretty, the squeamish should cover their eyes...):
- Both Sprint and T-Mobile will get significant merger attention from one of several major non-wireless infrastructure players - Nope, they decided to actually get hitched this time, precluding any such activity. Nothing like this happened, nowhere for me to hide.
- Network neutrality will rise again - Well, as expected regulators clawed it back, but not much has happened since, honestly. Nobody has really moved to exploit the new regulatory regime in ways that might cause a new public fight that might draw the attention of broader politics. Verdict: Nope.
- Two of the following six competitive network deals will happen
- Zayo/Interoute - Nope, it was GTT that stepped up.
- Crown Castle/FiberLight - Nope, not a peep.
- Windstream/TPX/TelePacific - Nope, not a peep.
- Some combination of Uniti, FirstLight, Everstream - Nope, not a peep.
- Telxius/GCX - Not yet, but given the turmoil in Indian courts delaying the process, maybe I've still got a chance?
- GTT/Cogent - Nope, they went for Interoute.
- The pace of infrastructure consolidation will continue to decelerate. - Well, I could fudge things on this one if I tried. But really, the pace seems to have held pretty steady. Some buyers weren't active, but others were. The US was a bit lighter, but internationally things were more active this year I think. We'll get into more of that in the next couple days with a couple M&A reviews.
- AT&T will abandon its attempt to buy Time Warner -- Completely wrong, they won in court and closed the deal. Oops.
- There will be a major security scare involving IoT -- Well, not really. There were incidents, like this recent one with a baby monitor, but no widespread scare materialized. Just the usual sort of major thefts of data.
- Verizon will roll out 5G in some commercial form somewhere in the USA. Ok, it's a stretch, but I get a partial victory here. Verizon did roll out 5G home broadband in six markets this year. There aren't any mobile devices on it, and it's just barely a 5G rollout. But I said 'some commercial form' and that it would be Verizon, so I win. Err, I don't get a zero.
So, not so good. I did know it was going to be a difficult task going in though. I'll try to restore the balance for 2019.
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