Light Reading

Is T-Mobile Planning a Fright Night for Rivals?

Dan Jones
8/9/2013
50%
50%
Repost This

Don't look now but phase three of the T-Mobile US "Un-carrier" strategy could come as soon as Halloween.

In a research note Friday, UBS Investment Research analyst John Hodulik writes that T-Mobile's subscriber success in the second quarter means "more upside" for T-Mobile's shares, but is a "bad omen" for investors looking for higher margins from the larger wireless operators. (See T-Mobile Adds 1.1M Subs.)

He writes:

    T-Mobile has emerged as an aggressive share-taker far sooner than expected and porting ratios in July suggest the worst may not be over. The Un-carrier 3.0 launch, expected by Halloween, will be another shot across the bow, forcing the larger carriers to sacrifice margins and/or share. Layering on a resurgent Sprint in 2014 makes higher wireless margin estimates start to look like a stretch.


T-Mobile CEO John Legere boasted of having the next phase of the operator's revamped strategy all planned out at its JUMP launch event in July. (See T-Mobile: Might As Well JUMP.)

If phase one of the strategy was to drop contracts and get started on its LTE deployment, and phase two initiated a trade-in program and more widespread LTE, what could phase three mean?

I reached out to Hodulik on this, but drew a blank -- financial analysts don't usually like to talk outside of school.

On the technical side, I expect T-Mobile will likely be covering 200 million potential customers with LTE by Fright Night, and that the first features of LTE-Advanced would be supported by handsets in the U.S. by that time too.

I must admit that I'm a little stumped on what T-Mobile could do further to jazz up its pricing schemes. It seems to me that an even more aggressive trade-in scheme targeting AT&T users might make sense, but I'm really just spit-balling here.

What ideas, readers?

But the real question is -- what the hell will T-Mobile's ebullient and sweary CEO, John Legere, dress up as for Halloween?

As ever, you're welcome to guess away on that topic too.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

(5)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
Dan@LightReadingMobile
50%
50%
Dan@LightReadingMobile,
User Rank: Blogger
8/15/2013 | 11:20:30 AM
Re: T-Mobile 3.0
Well T-Mobile at least seems to be deploying in cities rather than Sprint's strange small town LTE deployments. For many, good coverage in the major cities is the priority.
KBode
50%
50%
KBode,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/15/2013 | 11:08:36 AM
Re: T-Mobile 3.0
Thought it was interesting Hodulik was also weirdly bullish about Sprint in his most recent research notes, even though Sprint's coming in last place in so many LTE speed rankings of late, and their LTE coverage maps have been criticized as being, if I recall correctly, "total fantasy."

I still wonder if these unlimited plan options stick around. Historically I've found that the more companies try to compete with AT&T and Verizon, the more they start acting like them to keep pace. Fewer perks, more weird fees, etc.

Sprint's been doing more of that stuff over the last few years.

T-Mobile seems seriously intent on being disruptive, though I wonder how long that really lasts. It does seem to come down to coverage, and I still don't think Sprint or T-Mobile are anywhere close to AT&T and Verizon out on real-world U.S. highways.
Dan@LightReadingMobile
50%
50%
Dan@LightReadingMobile,
User Rank: Blogger
8/15/2013 | 10:18:28 AM
Re: T-Mobile 3.0
Could be! I don't see investors -- as opposed to customers -- loving that though.
milan03
50%
50%
milan03,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/15/2013 | 3:22:14 AM
Re: T-Mobile 3.0
Actualy UnCarrier 3.0 has to be T-Mobile paying your full ETF, then laying down the ETF financing plan to switch to T-Mobile. They'd make a payment in full on your behalf to the carrier you're getting out of, then you're repaying over 24 months.
milan03
50%
50%
milan03,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/15/2013 | 1:06:40 AM
T-Mobile 3.0
It'll be very interesting to see what's up their sleeve this time! T-Mobile most definitely looks to be the most disruptive wireless operator of 2013.
timkridel
50%
50%
timkridel,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/13/2013 | 3:58:08 AM
re: Is T-Mobile Planning a Fright Night for Rivals?
From my March 2013 Heavy Reading Insider report:

"There's a strong future for 2G with us," says Rusty Lhamon, T-Mobile USA director of M2M. "In M2M, we see this as something that's expanding as we look at some of our competitors sunsetting their 2G networks, and they're looking for a soft spot to land."
DanJonesLRMobile
50%
50%
DanJonesLRMobile,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/10/2013 | 9:08:07 PM
re: Is T-Mobile Planning a Fright Night for Rivals?
Yeah, this is the way I see it. Shows you how much the supposed wisdom of the market really exists because I remember Sprint undertaking aggressive pricing schemes before and getting slammed by Wall Street for having deadbeat customers.
DanJonesLRMobile
50%
50%
DanJonesLRMobile,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/10/2013 | 5:37:41 PM
re: Is T-Mobile Planning a Fright Night for Rivals?
Gotcha, well that was part of the point of the point of the MetroPCS acquisition, get more spectrum for upgrades. Seems like they're upgrading the cities with LTE first though.
Matthew Prendergast
50%
50%
Matthew Prendergast,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/10/2013 | 2:46:16 PM
re: Is T-Mobile Planning a Fright Night for Rivals?
Nah, I think they will offer a similar deal like jump with your current non-t-mobile contracts. Maybe something like, T-mobile will pay off your contract for an additional amount of money a month plus a lower cost upgrade or free phone. Saying something is done ahead of time is nice but John has been announcing major deals, not just "Hey were ahead of schedule!". Whatever it is, it will be for the consumer which is fantastic.
CPPCrispy
50%
50%
CPPCrispy,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/10/2013 | 1:13:54 AM
re: Is T-Mobile Planning a Fright Night for Rivals?
What I meant by my original comment is that T-Mobile has a vast 2G network that they need to upgrade (replace) to HSPA+/LTE and that hopefully they will announce their upgrade plan with phase 3. I agree that no carrier is upgrading 2G but before T-Mobile can move customers off 2G they need to implement HSPA+/LTE network wide.
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
More Blogs from Jonestown
Cisco may not be in the 4G macro RAN but its investment in Altiostar is edging it closer than ever before.
AT&T Small Cells chief Gordon Mansfield is "skeptical" about the "small cells as a service" concept that MSOs have been talking up.
If Facebook buys a drone maker, it could be looking for a way to connect hard-to-network places around the globe.
Ready for the next level of big-data collection? Say "hi" to Google's 3D mapping "Project Tango" smartphone.
If, like me, you were wondering what the hell "fronthaul" is... well, this is the simplest explanation I could pull together.
Flash Poll
LRTV Documentaries
Cable Eyes Big Technology Shifts

4|16|14   |   03:02   |   (4) comments


US cable engineers are facing a lot of heavy lifting in the coming years, notes Light Reading Cable/Video Practice Leader Alan Breznick.
LRTV Custom TV
Maximizing Customer Experience & Assuring Service Delivery in an IP World

4|15|14   |   4:57   |   (0) comments


Steven Shalita, VP of Marketing, NetScout Systems, Inc., discusses the challenges cable/MSO operators face in assuring the delivery of new IP-based services. Key points include the value of proactively managing performance, and using rich analytics and operational intelligence to better understand service and usage trends, make smarter business decisions and ...
LRTV Documentaries
Bye-Bye DVD: Consumers Embrace Digital Video

4|10|14   |   04:17   |   (7) comments


Veteran video analyst Colin Dixon, founder and principal analyst of nScreenMedia, says research shows 56% are using digital video already.
LRTV Documentaries
Video: TW Cable Puts Multicast Gateways to the Test

4|8|14   |   04:13   |   (1) comment


Tom Gonder, a chief architect at Time Warner Cable, explains how its trial of multicast gateways is impacting IP-based video plans.
LRTV Custom TV
Managing & Monetizing Big Data in Operator Environments

4|7|14   |     |   (1) comment


At Mobile World Congress, Gigamon's Director of Service Provider Solutions, Andy Huckridge, and Heavy Reading Analyst Sarah Wallace discuss the 'big data' issues facing carriers and operators today.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Data Center Energy – Build Your Data Center in a Modular Way

4|7|14   |   2:13   |   (0) comments


Dr. Fang Liangzhou, VP Network Energy Product Line, shared his thoughts about the challenges for data centers during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Agile Network Solution – An Overview of Huawei's Agile Network Solution

4|7|14   |   2:31   |   (0) comments


Ajay Gupta, Director of Product Marketing, Networking Product Line, gives an overview of the Agile Network Solutions during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s eLTE Voice Trunking, Video and Data Applied for Railways

4|7|14   |   1:38   |   (0) comments


Gottfried Winter is the Sales Director at Funkwerk, a German specialist in GSM-r terminals and a long-time partner of Huawei. At CeBIT 2014, Winter talks to Light Reading about this partnership and the integration of enhanced voice trunking, video and data functions.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
LeaseWeb Speaks Highly of Huawei's Datacenter Products

4|7|14   |   1:37   |   (0) comments


Rene Olde Olthof, Operations Director LeaseWeb, talks about the next data center transformation during CeBIT 2014.
LRTV Documentaries
Comcast: Reshaping the Cable Network Architecture

4|3|14   |   07:11   |   (8) comments


Shamim Akhtar, Comcast's architect and senior director of network strategy, explains why the cable company is moving to a more distributed network architecture.
LRTV Custom TV
VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger at Mobile World Congress

4|1|14   |   3:41   |   (0) comments


VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger speaks to Heavy Reading about the value of virtualization spanning from the data center to service provider networks to mobile devices.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Analysts' Impressions of Huawei SoftCOM at ONS 2014

4|1|14   |   1:11   |   (0) comments


After visiting the Huawei booth at ONS, Lee Doyle of Doyle Research gives his appraisal of Huawei's SoftCOM solution.
Hot Topics
BlackBerry Invests in Healthcare IT Startup
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 4/15/2014
Volvo: AT&T HSPA+ Can Drive My Car
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 4/16/2014
WhatsApp Threatens Carrier VoLTE
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 4/18/2014
Mobile Apps Susceptible to Heartbleed, Too
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 4/14/2014
Report: NFV/SDN Standards 'Myopic' on Service Management
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 4/16/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed