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The number of consumers taking out quad-play broadband bundles is set to increase significantly over the next five years, it has been reported.

According to Strategy Analytics, under half of UK households currently take four communication or entertainment services from the same broadband provider.

However, the analyst believes this is about to change, as more customers bolt on services such as digital TV, home phone, mobile and line rental to their broadband deals.

By 2016, Strategy Analytics expects 67 per cent of households to be paying for a quad-play broadband package through their service provider.

At the end of this year, around 613,000 consumers will be signed up to a quad-play deal, the firm predicted, enabling them to keep costs low.

Generally speaking, broadband providers offer discounted rates to households willing to take all their communication and entertainment services from the same vendor.

Ben Piper, Director of the Strategy Analytics Multiplay Market Dynamics service and author of the report, commented that broadband providers use multi-play bundles as a marketing vehicle, in a bid to attract new customers.

But they also use the bundles to keep hold of their existing subscribers, limiting customer attrition, he stated.

"And survey research we've just fielded in the UK shows that quad-play does provide a measurable amount of 'churn insulation' or 'stickiness'," Mr Piper stated.

"Customers who subscribe to four services from the same provider are less inclined to defect."

Leading UK broadband provider Virgin Media recently reported a 36 per cent churn rate among its standalone broadband or phone customers over the past year.

However, just six per cent of quad-play broadband package subscribers switched to an alternative service provider, highlighting the benefits of multi-service deals to vendors.

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