Light Reading
Subscriber dynamics were in flux in the second quarter as the four Tier 1 US wireless operators grappled with shifting pricing plans, increased competition and tablet growth.

Tablets, Prepaid, Competition Shake Up Q2

Sarah Reedy
8/5/2014
50%
50%

Tablets, new pricing plans and the "uncarrier" brought about some interesting subscriber dynamics in the US wireless market in the second quarter.

During the quarter, we saw Verizon Wireless make up for its slip in smartphone additions with huge tablet gains. AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), on the other hand, trailed Verizon in total postpaid net adds, but far outdid Big Red in the still-important smartphone category, thanks in part to its Next device financing plans. Both lost customers on the prepaid front, with AT&T particularly feeling the burn as it has yet to move Cricket customers to its network and lost some while trying to do so. (See AT&T Plans a Prepaid Cricket Attack.)


Visit the Light Reading Mobile channel for more wireless news, analysis and opinion.


Meanwhile, the big two's smaller competitors and merger-maybes, Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) and T-Mobile US Inc. , fared quite differently in the quarter. Sprint's customer exodus continued (the figures here refer to Sprint's fiscal first quarter, which ended June 30), albeit at a slower rate than before, and it appeared most of them were going to T-Mobile, which managed to pull in 1.5 million new customers in the quarter. (See Slim Postpaid Pickings for Sprint, T-Mobile .)

To break it down, the chart below details the subscriber wins and losses for the quarter, including the operator's non-human connections.

Table 1: US Tier 1 Wireless Operators Q2

Total Net Customer Adds Postpaid Growth Prepaid Growth Smartphones Added Tablets Added Connected Devices Total Customers
AT&T 634,000 1.03 million 405,000 (loss) 576,000 360,000 175,000 98.6 million
Verizon Wireless 1.4 million 304,000 14,000 (loss) 304,000 1.15 million Not reported 104.6 million
Sprint (fiscal Q1) 220,000 (loss) 181,000 (loss) 542,000 (loss) 5 million Not reported 503,000 (wholesale and affiliate customers) 53 million
T-Mobile 1.5 million 908,000 102,000 6.2 million 329,000 (mobile broadband, mostly tablets) Not reported 50 million

Source: Operators' earnings reports

For more, check out Light Reading's Q2 earnings coverage:

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, Light Reading

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
nasimson
50%
50%
nasimson,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/5/2014 | 10:55:41 PM
some real competition
Thanks Sarah for the summary. Appears that barring some overlapped customers if the Sprint had not dropped its bid for T-Mobile, it would have made very close to Verizon giving some real competition to both AT&T and Verizon.

For too long now, the US market is divided into the BIG two and the small two - effectively remaining a duopoly.
SReedy
50%
50%
SReedy,
User Rank: Blogger
8/5/2014 | 9:11:26 AM
operator priorities
The subscriber numbers and how they affect earnings is really interesting because it shows what different priorities the operators have -- tablets for Verizon, LTE smartphones for AT&T, pure gains (even at the expense of financials) for T-Mobile, and just customer retention for Sprint. Connected devices also seemed to get a little less love this quarter, but they are nonetheless important for all four.
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Custom TV
Razorsight Expert's Advice on Real-Time Analytics

11|27|14   |   1:43   |   (0) comments


Razorsight's powerful cloud-based Predictive Analytics solutions are used by the world's leading communications and media brands to drive smarter decisions, enable faster actions and optimize outcomes. Get expert advice.
LRTV Interviews
From 4G to 5G: Alcatel-Lucent's Dave Geary

11|25|14   |   09:09   |   (1) comment


Dave Geary, President of Wireless at Alcatel-Lucent, talks about the evolution of the 4G market, small cells, partnerships, 5G and the IoT.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Building a Secure Telefonica Network With Huawei's High-End Firewall

11|24|14   |   4:37   |   (0) comments


Andrew Davies, IP architect of the Telefonica, a leading digital communications company, discusses the Huawei security gateway solution and putting the solution into the testbed.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Partners with Spirent to Verify CE12816's 10GE Port & TRILL Networking Capabilities

11|24|14   |   2:50   |   (0) comments


Spirent Communications is the world's leading supplier for telecom testing appliances and solutions. Spirent has been in a close partnership with Huawei for a long time.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Saudi Airlines & Its ICT Transformation

11|24|14   |   2:07   |   (0) comments


In this video, Saudi Airlines discusses its network problems and how Huawei's Agile Network is its all-in-one solution.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Agile Switch Benefiting Saudi Arabia's Yamamah Hospital

11|24|14   |   2:40   |   (0) comments


Saudi Arabia's Yamamah Hospital speaks about how Huawei's Agile Switch has improved the medical service's network infrastructure.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
FanPlay & Huawei Build a Wireless Agile Smart Stadium

11|24|14   |   2:13   |   (0) comments


FanPlay is a cloud-based white label service, which is effectively a football fan engagement platform underpinned by mobile payment technology.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Building an Agile Stadium

11|24|14   |   3:54   |   (0) comments


Stadiums may be thousands of tons of concrete and steel, but they now need to be agile. Being at the stadium may not be as alluring as it once was. Sports franchises and stadium operators discuss how to get fans back.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Helps ChinaCache Tackle Challenges in the Internet Industry

11|24|14   |   3:09   |   (0) comments


ChinaCache is China's largest content distribution network supplier. Huawei's CE12800 has provided ChinaCache with very strong support in its establishment of an infrastructure network.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Cefinity on Managed Security Services & Next-Generation Firewall

11|24|14   |   7:05   |   (0) comments


Cefinity is a cloud management service provider in Southeast Asia. Ivan Zhang, CEO of the company, discusses the implementation of security service management in the cloud era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Agile Gateway in the Eyes of Cefinity

11|24|14   |   2:11   |   (0) comments


Cefinity is a managed service provider for enterprise networks. The company currently uses Huawei's AR series routers for the most complete range of functions. CEO Ivan Zhang speaks about the advantages of the AR series routers.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
CTO of Bus-Online Talks About Huawei's Agile Gateway

11|24|14   |   2:53   |   (0) comments


Bus-Online covers around 100 million users everyday. In addition to providing mobile TV, and advertising services to the public, Bus-Online has also entered the field of mobile Internet.
Upcoming Live Events
December 2, 2014, New York City
December 3, 2014, New York City
December 8-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
February 10, 2015, Atlanta, GA
April 14, 2015, New York City, NY
May 6, 2015, McCormick Convention Center, Chicago, IL
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Infographics
Irish Telecom outlines the rise of VoIP technology, including its adoption within businesses and their perception of its quality.
Hot Topics
Net Neutrality Even Mark Cuban Could Love
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 11/26/2014
Do You Have a 2020 Vision?
Dennis Mendyk, Vice President of Research, Heavy Reading, 11/21/2014
Why 5G Is a Different Beast
Robert Clark, 11/26/2014
New Juniper CEO Can Be Thankful for $14.5M
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 11/25/2014
Eurobites: Net Neutrality Battle Looms
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 11/27/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed