T-Mobile Announces Impressive Quarter, Adds 685,000+ Contract Customers
August 8, 2013 8:53 AM
comment(s) - last by
T-Mobile's plan to offer users cheaper upgrades, lower contracts is paying off
In Q1 2013, following its
merger with MetroPCS
, America's fourth place carrier T-Mobile USA
tacked on 3,000 postpaid customers
, its first growth since 2010. The carrier -- majority owned by Deutsche Telekom AG (
) -- announced its Q2 results this week and they're quite impressive.
I. T-Mobile Surges on Customer Gains
Leading the way is a net addition of 688,000 branded postpaid customers (the results include MetroPCS results for May and June). Of those additions 685,000 came from the core T-Mobile brand.
The net postpaid add count was just narrowly behind that of America's top wireless carrier, Verizon Wireless (a joint venture between Vodafone Group Plc (
), Verizon Communications Inc. (
added 941,000 net postpaid subscribers
in Q2. Sprint Nextel Corp. (
), by contrast,
lost 1.05m subscribers
-- which analysts said mostly fled to T-Mobile.
T-Mobile added on more than a half million subscribers. [Image Source: Bloomberg]
T-Mobile and MetroPCS also added 412,000 prepaid customers, bringing its total net customer additions to 1.1 million. The carrier's postpaid subscriber churn, a measure of the number of customers leaving, was relatively low at (versus 2.63 percent for Sprint and 0.93 percent for Verizon Wireless). T-Mobile now has 44 million customers, just behind Sprint's 55 million.
T-Mobile lacks the marketing of industry giants AT&T, Inc. (
) and Verizon Wireless, but its "uncarrier" strategy arguably offers the most competitive model in the industry.
II. Frugal, But Still Profitable
The carrier pocketed $1.1B USD in total profit before tax, interest, and depreciation (EBITDA) from its MetroPCS and T-Mobile brands. It also saw revenue per user (ARPU) increase to $35.97 USD, a rise of 29 percent, which was due mostly to the inclusion of MetroPCS data. T-Mobile's ARPU is still nearly three times less than Verizon Wireless's ARPU -- $109.67 -- but that's simply a reflection of the company's two strategies.
T-Mobile has finally found success acting as a budget carrier who reduces its own expenses to turn a modest profit. Verizon, by contrast turns larger profits by charging customers much more for their equivalent contracts, while offering them phones up front -- sort of like the mortgage broker of the phone world.
T-Mobile President and CEO John Legere (left) [Image Source: Forbes]
CEO John Legere remarks:
T-Mobile’s Un-carrier approach has clearly resonated with consumers. By fixing the things that drive them mad, like contracts and upgrades, and freeing them from the two-year sentences imposed on them by our competitors, they are choosing the new T-Mobile in unprecedented numbers. We are just beginning and we will continue to apply this innovative thinking to the Un-carrier offers we create and to the internal operations of our company, which taken together are driving significant shareholder value creation.
By not subsidizing phones, T-Mobile avoids
paying inflated fees to devicemakers
passing along those savings
to customers at lower rates. T-Mobile even softens the blow of hardware costs
via a clever financing strategy
, by giving customers phones with only
a small upfront cost
(similar to its subsidized competitors) with the remain cost spread out over monthly payments. (Customers are also free to buy the devices in full up front.)
Its customers are not bound by their monthly contracts and are free to leave at any time, yet have the convenience of a normal postpaid contract.
Perhaps best of all, T-Mobile's recently announced
allows users to pay a $10 USD monthly fee that both offers free device replacement, and a free trade-in upgrade every six months.
AT&T, for example
, only offers yearly upgrades and
forces you to pay your remaining installation payments
on the device that you traded in; T-Mobile voids the remaining payments on your old device, potentially saving you hundreds of dollars.
II. iPhone, LTE are Key Wins for T-Mobile
Despite being the last carrier to acquire the Apple, Inc. (
) iPhone, T-Mobile still saw a nice bump from the popular smartphone, which launched on its network in April. The T-Mobile
is offered for $99 USD, plus a $20 USD/month repayment charge. T-Mobile said that iPhones accounted for 29 percent of its added subscriber sales. T-Mobile also reported "strong sales" of Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd.'s (
Galaxy S IV
, although it declined to give exact numbers.
In total smartphones accounted for 86 percent of T-Mobile's unit sales. The carrier sold 4.3 million smartphones to customers.
iPhones helped drive new T-Mobile subscriptions.
More good news came on the LTE front. While T-Mobile funneled $1.1B USD into rolling out the fourth-generation wireless technology, it was pleased to announce that the deployment was ahead of its previously announced schedule, a nice surprise. The LTE network now covers 116 metro areas and 157 million customers, almost up to the 157 cities Sprint supported at the quarter's end.
U.S. Cellular Corp. sold T-Mobile USA an additional 10 MHz band of
Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) spectrum
covering a number of central and southeastern markets. T-Mobile says that spectrum will allow 32 million more people in 29 markets to be covered by LTE.
A year ago,
, some feared T-Mobile was
headed for a market exit
. Now the carrier looks invigorated and profitable, leaving rival carriers scrambling to keep up with its aggressive mobile strategy.
T-Mobile USA [earnings release]
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: Good plan
8/8/2013 10:53:07 AM
T-Mobile has some really good stuff lately. At least they are thinking of ways to do things differently. The other carriers are just trying to think of new ways to screw you.
I would have moved too if my phone and account weren't paid for by the company I work for.
"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer
Sprint is the Biggest Loser in Q2, Looks Forward to SoftBank-Driven Recovery
July 30, 2013, 10:33 AM
T-Mobile Slams AT&T's "Upgrade Program" in New Print Advertisement
July 23, 2013, 12:30 PM
Verizon Adds Nearly 1M Postpaid Customers, But Analysts Aren't Impressed
July 18, 2013, 6:00 PM
AT&T Launching "Next" Phone Upgrade Plan Starting July 26, Verizon to Announce "VZ Edge" Plan
July 16, 2013, 8:04 AM
T-Mobile Unveils New Jump! Program: Twice Yearly Upgrades for $10/Month
July 10, 2013, 4:56 PM
Skrillex Releases Free Album Inside App, But Crashes Torture Fans
March 13, 2014, 8:04 PM
Microsoft Waives Windows Phone OS Licensing Fees for Two Hardware Makers in India
March 13, 2014, 1:07 PM
Huawei Says Windows Phone is "Low Priority", Relegates It to Dual OS
March 13, 2014, 11:21 AM
$1,200 Nikon 1 V3 Mirrorless Camera Offers 120fps Slow Motion Capture
March 13, 2014, 9:04 AM
Surface 2 LTE Tipped for AT&T, Power Cover Available for Pre-order
March 12, 2014, 9:15 AM
HTC One Leaks: LED Smart Cover, Carrier Models, Google Play Ed.
March 11, 2014, 5:30 PM
Most Popular Articles
Bitcoin King Pt. II: Mt. Gox's Dictator Karpelès Proves Tragically Flawed
March 7, 2014, 1:12 PM
Hack Reveals Fallen Bitcoin CEO's Posh Tokyo Penthouse
March 10, 2014, 4:28 PM
NASA Considering SpaceX "Red Dragon" for Returning Mars Samples to Earth
March 10, 2014, 2:43 PM
India Could Rock Google With Its Biggest Antitrust Fine Yet -- $5B USD
March 10, 2014, 8:12 PM
Sony, Panasonic Announce Archival Disc Standard Coming in 2015
March 10, 2014, 8:50 AM
Latest Blog Posts
Tesla vs. BMW: Who Has the Safer EV?
Feb 1, 2014, 2:56 PM
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
Global Cyber Espionage Concerns Reveal Growing Cyber Armies
Nov 29, 2013, 11:04 AM
Is The Period Becoming an Expression of Anger?
Nov 26, 2013, 2:02 PM
NSA and Congress -- You Will Never Kill the Constitution, It's an Idea
Nov 10, 2013, 2:00 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information