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Palm's Pre is exclusive to Sprint until Q1 2010
Sprint reports loss for Q2 despite Pre hoopla

Sprint has been battling a loss of revenue and subscribers over the last year. The mobile provider was unable to launch its Xohm service for WiMAX in the U.S. in the capacity it had hoped and ultimately decided to collaborate with Clearwire.

Sprint has been looking a bit better of late since the launch of its exclusive Palm Pre and the buzz the device generated. Sprint announced its financial data for Q2 2009 this week. The highlight of the report is that the company lost $384 million amounting to 13 cents per diluted share. Sprint reports total net operating revenues of $8.1 billion for the quarter. Sprint says that as of June 30, 2009 it has $4.6 billion of cash and cash equivalents and $1.5 billion in borrowing capacity available under its revolving bank credit combining for a total liquidity of $6.1 billion.

Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said in a statement, "In the second quarter, we made further progress on our efforts to enhance financial stability, improve the customer experience and reinvigorate the brand,” said Dan Hesse, Sprint Nextel CEO. “The widespread visibility surrounding our record-breaking June launch of the Palm® Pre™ handset gave us an unprecedented opportunity to showcase these improvements to customers as ‘a new Sprint.’ They saw a 3G network described by PC World magazine as the most reliable among competitors, key satisfaction and performance metrics in customer care improving for 18 straight months, advertising that won the top international award in Cannes, and a stable balance sheet with 2009 long-term debt maturities paid and enough cash on hand to cover maturities through 2011."

He continued saying, "In the quarter, we saw the best retail net add performance in the past seven quarters. We also saw the best quarterly sequential change in CDMA net add performance in two years, ARPU that has been stable for six consecutive quarters, continued prepaid growth, and improved sequential Adjusted Operating Income Before Depreciation and Amortization* (Adjusted OIBDA),” Hesse said. “However, we are not satisfied that we lost a quarter of a million customers in the quarter."

Sprint had a couple notable announcements for the quarter with WiMAX finally coming to Las Vegas and Sprint purchasing Virgin Mobile USA. The wireless provider also maintains that it will be launching WiMAX in six more markets this year. Sprint reports that it spent $321 million over the quarter compared to $291 million in Q1 2009 and $646 million in Q2 2008. Net debt decreased by $700 million to $16.4 billion during the quarter.

Sprint served 48.4 million customers at the end of Q2 2009 compared to 49.1 million at the end of Q1 2009. That number includes 34.4 million post-paid subscribers and 5 million prepaid subscribers along with 9.3 million wholesale and affiliate subscribers.

Wireless churn is a big metric in the industry and Sprint had a post-paid churn over the quarter of 2.055 compared to 2.25% in Q1. Boost pre-paid churn was 6.38% for the quarter compares to 6.86% the previous quarter.

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I was one of those statistics
By Sharpie on 7/29/2009 11:45:58 AM , Rating: 2
Sprint customer service is terrible. I had problems in my area with service, making, and receiving calls. I would have to make about 3 calls on average before the other side got a ring. This was with 4 different phones all on sprint. When speaking to customer service about the issue they essentially said we wont do anything about the problem so deal with it. It's no wonder why they keep loosing subscribers.

RE: I was one of those statistics
By cocoviper on 7/29/2009 12:19:11 PM , Rating: 3
When was this? They used to have horrible customer service but all sorts of studies have shown them rapidly climbing customer service rankings, even going from worst to first in some instances.

RE: I was one of those statistics
By AlexWade on 7/29/2009 12:44:43 PM , Rating: 2
That ringing problem still exists. I have a friend with Sprint and it is a miracle if his phone rings. He calls me back after I leave my voicemail. When I ask, I found out every time that he was not using the phone and the phone never rang. This has been going on for years.

RE: I was one of those statistics
By cocoviper on 7/29/2009 1:01:30 PM , Rating: 1
Have him email me and I'll see if I can determine what's causing it/fix it for him.

RE: I was one of those statistics
By tviceman on 7/29/2009 2:58:28 PM , Rating: 2
You schmuck.

By LRonaldHubbs on 7/29/2009 3:51:00 PM , Rating: 4
When emailing David, be sure to include not just your Sprint account number, but also your SSN, bank account numbers, and credit card numbers including security codes. The information should be sufficient for him to help you.

RE: I was one of those statistics
By drycrust on 7/29/2009 2:22:14 PM , Rating: 3
My work experience (not in USA) basically was being a technical call centre operator. Last year I went to work for a well known consumer electronics manufacturer at their call centre (in New Zealand). When I arrived the average turn around time for a unit was three weeks; when I left it was 4 days! Yes, 4 days!
That was from the time the unit was booked in at inwards goods, evaluation, contact the customer with cost of repair, get approval for repair, order in the parts, fix, test, and despatched. 4 days!
The only major difference was me! After 6 months they terminated my contract, presumably because I had done the work needed.

This proves that having operators in the call centre who have a fair idea on what is going on is very important. Any old (or young) person can answer the phone, but it takes a lot of experience to actually drive the fault and motivate people to not be satisfied with half hearted outcomes.

I now drive a bus because most businesses think having a young person answering the phone is more important than having an experienced person answering the phone.

As others have said, this company has only themselves to blame.

RE: I was one of those statistics
By sigmatau on 7/29/2009 2:35:57 PM , Rating: 2
Verizon has the worst customer service by a long shot.

I think everyone here has their own horror stories and could rate any of the carriers as worst. Verizon is the one for me for cell and dsl service.

Its better than ATT n Verizon
By SoulBlighter on 7/29/2009 10:46:58 AM , Rating: 2
I will speak to my area (orlando fl and Belle plaine mn, to what I have experienced. We were users of Cingular aka ATT for past 10 years. Recently, thanks to their choked network, we had no choice but to switch to other carrier, thanks to trial periods from other carriers, guess what even Verizon is not as good as it advertises, I would place Verizon behind if not equal att when it comes to crappy voice and loss of signals. Surprisingly T-mobile worked like charm, even at low signals, as compared to att and Verizon. Sprint came as the best solution, but we made ourselves to stick to T due to available to use our current iphones on it. If sprint had gsm availability, it would have been my first choice.

RE: Its better than ATT n Verizon
By ice456789 on 7/29/2009 11:18:36 AM , Rating: 2
That's very strange. I live in Orlando (UCF side) and I would rank coverage this way (worst to best) ATT, Sprint,.......Verizon. Verizon coverage blows the other two away in my experience. And I worked for Sprint in the call center in Orlando. Funny thing... Sprint coverage in and around the call center was non-existent until they put a repeater on top of the building. I have had no issues at all with Verizon coverage in Orlando.

RE: Its better than ATT n Verizon
By cocoviper on 7/29/2009 12:11:28 PM , Rating: 2
Except Sprint has free roaming on Verizon's network.

The only reason to go with Verizon is if you enjoy paying for the most expensive plans in the US.

RE: Its better than ATT n Verizon
By ice456789 on 7/29/2009 4:39:47 PM , Rating: 2
Free roaming is great... but it's still roaming. Sprint phones will prefer a weak Sprint signal over a strong roaming signal. Why? Because it costs money to Sprint when you roam on another network. That's why I can stand in a grocery store next to my friend who has a Sprint phone. I have a strong signal. His calls are dropping. While it is free to roam, his phone won't do it if it detects a Sprint signal even an almost useless one.

Oh, and if you think the only difference between Sprint and Verizon is price then you are sorely mistaken.

RE: Its better than ATT n Verizon
By 67STANG on 7/30/2009 12:27:08 AM , Rating: 2
Sprint is still in business?

Anyhow, the only reason to go with Verizon, is that they don't drop all of my calls. My wife and I switched to AT&T a couple of weeks ago (she got a LG and I got an iPhone) and our service sucks. Can't even get 3G in my house...

Could be worse
By soulrider4ever on 7/29/2009 10:22:19 AM , Rating: 2
All things considered, that's really not that bad - I'm sure most of those losses were really from the Nextel side - a merger I'm sure they are kicking themselves for.

RE: Could be worse
By TheSpaniard on 7/29/2009 10:42:55 AM , Rating: 2
and on the upside, more bandwidth for the remaining Sprint customers

Great news!
By WiiKnee on 7/29/2009 11:05:10 AM , Rating: 2
Sprint are a bunch of thieves and crooks; this is great news and well deserved. Their business model is absolutely corrupt (as far as cell phones, anyhow) and they shall reap what they sow. After my wife's initial two year contract had expired, they conveniently signed her up for another two year contract without her consent and would not allow her to cancel this new "contract" without paying an absurd fee. My wife was brought to tears trying to cancel, and each separate business unit kept passing her to another for days - nobody, however, could produce this alleged "contract", but they still held her to it.


RE: Great news!
By highlandsun on 7/29/2009 1:15:38 PM , Rating: 2
was that before or after the Nextel merger? as far as I can see, the really unsavory stuff started with the merger.....

By mikefarinha on 7/29/2009 1:07:43 PM , Rating: 2
About five days ago I switched from Sprint (Which I've had since 2001) to Verizon. Last year I moved into a house which had horrible service from nearly all carriers except Verizon.

Unfortunately I had to wait for my 2-year contract with Sprint to expire before switching.

Sprint has a tough mountain to climb in improving their image & service. Competition is good so I hope they improve.

By cyclopsbrew on 7/29/2009 2:19:49 PM , Rating: 2
I have been a Sprint customer for over 20 years. I was won over by the sound quality of Sprint over AT&T when having to make long distance calls from Singapore, and other points in the Persian Gulf. I've heard of lousy customer service, but never experienced it. As a general rule, I make sure that my wife and I are on different carriers, to ensure one of us will have coverage. She's on Alltel (now Verizon) and I'm on Sprint. I'm not fond of the restrictions that Verizon imposes on the handsets they issue. AT&T's network appears to be experiencing I-Phone overload. T-Mobile customers appear to satisfied with their service, but if you travel alot, T-Mobile is probably not your best choice. For my purposes, Sprint fits the bill. I like their service pricing structure, can't complain about the coverage, and only get aggravated by the new phones that come out, after I've just purchased one. (I'm currently waiting for Palm to come out with a Treo Pro-like device that runs WebOS and has a micro-SD slot).

And they buy virgin
By rudy on 7/29/2009 2:20:34 PM , Rating: 2
The nextel merger was suppose to be a great thing for Sprint but all they managed to do was piss off all the loyal customers. I personally use sprint because in my area their network is good and their plans are the most reasonable after my employee discount. But I am worried as they keep losing money they will cut more into service.

I am completely dismayed that Sprint would come up with over 400 million to buy a company when they can't keep their own customers how about you stop bleeding customers before you try to buy another company. If your core business is losing what the heck makes your stupid CEO think that you are going to keep any customers from the company you buy? Fix your own problems before adding more problems to your list.

The other major problem sprint has is it takes them forever to get a phone out the door so phone fanatics wont be buying from them any time soon since everyone else can get a phone ready long before sprint with the exception of the pre.

By sapiens74 on 7/29/2009 3:36:52 PM , Rating: 2
Sprint customer service is abhorrent

ATT is bad

Verizon is great

This is from dealing with them on an Enterprise level

By TheEinstein on 7/29/2009 4:08:22 PM , Rating: 2
I used to be a Windows Tech for Dell Computers on the Dimension line of PC's (though we were also an overflow designated center, and I handled all laptop and pc issues ultimately).

I know a good tech from a bad tech when I have issues.

9 out of 10 of their 'techs' are mere script readers without a clue. I could call in with the same issue nonstop and get different directions each and every time.

Do they even take notes of what they did?

You can even ask for a more skilled person, and just get someone who got to be a floor supervisor from politics as far as I can tell. No solution there.

Instead you must keep calling periodically until you find the one call center out there that must be filled with true technicians who know what they are doing.

That and just calling in and getting that annoying 'please enter your number' stuff bothers the hell outta me. ITS A WIRELESS CARD! I DO NOT CALL IT, IT DOES NOT CALL ME. GIVE ME AN OPERATOR YOU STUPID MACHINE!!!!

My final gripe is that as a truck driver I pay where I can find a sprint store. Check a map and 1/3 of the places they say are closed forever, 1/3 are converted to other carriers, and the remaining 1/3 actually still are Sprint stores... Hmmmm... is Sprint going outta business?

xohm is still stupid
By ElFenix on 7/29/2009 4:16:26 PM , Rating: 2
just call it 4G you marketing morons. at&t, 3rd to the market with 3G, just called it 3G and now you've got people who think they were first because verizon and sprint had no clue how to market their service.

By nofumble62 on 8/4/2009 2:51:27 AM , Rating: 2
I live in Phoenix, AZ. I used Sprint from 2000-2004. Pretty happy with their voice quality and never got dropped. Then in 2004, I switched to Verizon since we wanted to have the phone when we go camping. I also had an AT&T or T-mobile (shared with my brother) during this time. So here is my experience.

AT&T and T-mobile was suck. Signal strength was terrible. Got dropped too frequent. But admittedly, they are getting better in last 2 years.

Verizon has more coverage but their voice quality suck. I actually got dropped by Verizon a few times, more than I could remember with Sprint.

So it is really depended on where you live. In my area, Verizon is not that great.

"If you can find a PS3 anywhere in North America that's been on shelves for more than five minutes, I'll give you 1,200 bucks for it." -- SCEA President Jack Tretton
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