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4G/3G/WiFi

AT&T Boasts Smartphone Sales, LTE in NYC

AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) could blast through its smartphone sales record in the fourth quarter, the operator's CFO revealed in New York City on Wednesday. John Stephens, speaking at a UBS Investment Bank conference, said that Ma Bell has sold 6 million smartphones in the quarter through November. "[That's] about 100,000 a day," Stephens noted.

AT&T's previous sales record was 6.1 million smartphones in the third quarter of 2010. The company still has December, typically a strong sales month, to beat that total.

Clearly, the iPhone 4S has a lot to do with these sales. Stephens did note, however, that the operator now has Long Term Evolution (LTE) smartphones for sale too. (See AT&T Readies Its First LTE Phones .)

Stephens also revealed that AT&T is turning on new LTE markets in December to hit its target of 70 million people covered with the new 4G technology by year's end. "We are in the process of turning up New York City and other additional markets this month," Stephens said. (See AT&T Hits 15 LTE Markets, Adds Another Tablet.)

This means that AT&T will beat its target of 15 cities with LTE in 2011. This is important for the carrier as it competes with Verizon Wireless and its much larger LTE footprint in the U.S. (See Verizon Sells 1.4M LTE Devices in Q3.)

The need for additional spectrum for LTE services is one of the key reasons that AT&T made its $39 billion bid for T-Mobile US Inc. this year. Stephens avoided answering any questions about what AT&T would do if -- as seems far more likely these days -- the merger bid fails. (See FCC OKs AT&T’s Merger Application Withdrawal .)

"It is important to remember why we did this deal in the first place -- for our customers," Stephens said, explaining that AT&T continues to work to close the deal.

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

joset01 12/5/2012 | 4:47:09 PM
re: AT&T Boasts Smartphone Sales, LTE in NYC

No hint of an LTE iPhone from the CFO. He highlighted that only AT&T has a faster 3G iPhone in the US of course, though!

kaps 12/5/2012 | 4:47:03 PM
re: AT&T Boasts Smartphone Sales, LTE in NYC

Does the fact that people are still buying every iPhone made mean that nobody really cares whether it is running on 3G, 4G, or some other permutation of G? Or that it is running on AT&T's network, which was once thought to be the place people couldn't wait to leave?


So... customer inertia + iPhone distortion field > 4G marketing. To use Tebow math.

kaps 12/5/2012 | 4:47:03 PM
re: AT&T Boasts Smartphone Sales, LTE in NYC

Does the fact that people are still buying every iPhone made mean that nobody really cares whether it is running on 3G, 4G, or some other permutation of G? Or that it is running on AT&T's network, which was once thought to be the place people couldn't wait to leave?


So... customer inertia + iPhone distortion field > 4G marketing. To use Tebow math.

gtchavan 12/5/2012 | 4:47:03 PM
re: AT&T Boasts Smartphone Sales, LTE in NYC

They always put the cart before the horse and hopefully they will now spend the money and build the network.

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