Light Reading

Is T-Mobile Planning a Fright Night for Rivals?

Dan Jones
8/9/2013
50%
50%

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   >   >>
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
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.
DanJones
50%
50%
DanJones,
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 Sabre
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 Sabre
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
The connected car is driving the IoT market now, but that's just the start of it.
It's the Claure and Legere show! Sprint and T-Mobile CEOs trade barbs -- or at least retweets -- over rival Super Bowl ads.
Google is now backing or actively exploring three ways of delivering cheaper Internet connectivity to the world: satellites, drones and balloons.
Flying killers turn into duckface enablers!
The scary thing is that this massive Las Vegas show could get even bigger, thanks to the Internet of Things (IoT).
Flash Poll
From The Founder
The New IP is actually bigger even than business. Like another hugely important tech that Light Reading is digging into right now, the New IP has the potential to change the world by fundamentally advancing what it is possible for people to achieve with communications.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Shares Its Vision of the Future of Mobile Networks Innovations

2|26|15   |   2:30   |   (0) comments


Mobile broadband is changing our lives. It's reshaping the Internet, industry, and society. It allows us to freely connect with one another anytime, anywhere. At this year's Mobile World Congress, Huawei will share its latest insights and newest ideas and technologies that will shape the future of MBB. They will showcase their end-to-end MBB solutions that will ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Accelerate Digitizing, Boost Digital Business

2|26|15   |   6:14   |   (0) comments


A new digital revolution is leading us to a better connected world. Together with millions of digital partners, Huawei will help CSPs to build their digital service ecosystem and aggregate a wide variety of digital services. In this video, we find out how Huawei is going to help CSPs implement digital operations.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
The Secret Recipe to Enabling Hyper-Growth Industries

2|26|15   |   3:38   |   (0) comments


With a number of successful cases on network capability exposure, Huawei is going to share the secret recipe to enabling hyper-growth markets with a step-by-step approach.
LRTV Documentaries
BTE 2015 Is Bigger & Even Better

2|25|15   |   03:13   |   (4) comments


This year's Big Telecom Event (BTE) in Chicago is going to provide more opportunities than ever for networking, getting to grips with key industry challenges and opportunities and, equally as important, having some fun.
LRTV Interviews
Light Reading ICT Leaders Roundtable at MWC 2015

2|12|15   |   1:07   |   (2) comments


On Sunday March 1, 2015, Light Reading will host an ICT Leaders Roundtable in partnership with Huawei. At this half-day event, CIOs, analysts and researchers will discuss key industry trends like virtualization in the cloud with a specific focus on new business models. Located at the luxurious Renaissance Hotel near the Fira Barcelona, space is limited so please ...
LRTV Documentaries
Going Green in 2015

2|12|15   |   02:04   |   (0) comments


Energy efficiency is set to be an incredibly hot topic in the telecom industry this year.
LRTV Custom TV
SDN & NFV: Where Are We Going From Here?

2|11|15   |   11:27   |   (0) comments


Vitesse Semiconductor CTO Martin Nuss gives his perspective on why SDN and NFV should be tightly interconnected and how he sees the industry moving forward.
LRTV Documentaries
Time for Gigabit Europe?

2|9|15   |   01:27   |   (4) comments


Gigabit broadband networks are springing up all around the US and they'll soon become more commonplace in Europe.
LRTV Interviews
Brocade Brings New IP Vision to 2020 Vision Executive Summit

2|3|15   |   4:23   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Light Reading gathered telecom executives in Reykjavik, Iceland to discuss their vision for high-capacity networks through the end of the decade. The intimate, interactive meeting was set against the backdrop of Iceland's spectacular natural beauty. As one of the event's founding sponsors, Brocade's Kelly Herrell shared his company's strategy at ...
LRTV Interviews
Brocade's Kelly Herrell on the New IP

2|2|15   |   12:36   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Steve Saunders sat down with Brocade VP of Software Networking Kelly Herrell at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. They spoke about Brocade's approach to the New IP, the future of the telecom industry, and more.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Dr. Dong Sun Talks About Carriers' Digital Transformation & Huawei’s Telco OS

1|29|15   |   6:28   |   (0) comments


Dr. Dong Sun, Chief Architect of Digital Transformation Solutions at Huawei, discusses how telecom operators can become digital ecosystem enablers and deliver optimal user experiences that are in real-time, on-demand, all-online, DIY and social (ROADS).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Chief Network Architect Talks about Network Experience & Operators’ Strategies

1|29|15   |   3:39   |   (0) comments


In the digital age, network experience has become the primary productivity especially for telecom operators. In this video, Wenshuan Dang, Huawei’s Chief Network Architect, discusses how carriers can tackle the challenge of infrastructure complexity in order to enhance business agility and improve user experience.
Upcoming Live Events
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 10, 2015, Chicago, IL
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Net neutrality, broadband services and the current outlook on data consumption, as presented by the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
Hot Topics
Cyber Security Expert Warns: You're Doing It Wrong
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/23/2015
10 Weirdly Useful IoT Devices
Eryn Leavens, Copy Desk Editor, 2/24/2015
Small Cells Enabling Location Services
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 2/25/2015
Is FCC Weighing Net Neutrality Changes?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 2/25/2015
MWC: Let the Madness Begin
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 2/23/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Check out Light Reading's interview with Jay Samit, the newly appointed CEO of publicly traded SeaChange International Inc. With a resume that includes Sony, EMI, and Universal, Samit brings a reputation as an entrepreneur and a disruptor to his new role at the video solutions company. Hear what he had to say about the opportunities in video, as well as the outlook for cable, telco, OTT and mobile service providers.
G'day! And welcome to an entirely new feature on Light Reading -- our weekly "CEO-to-CEO" interview.