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Old Feb 11, 2014, 09:32 AM   #1
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Sprint Sells 5.6M Smartphones in Q4 2013, Stops Reporting iPhone Numbers




Sprint today announced that it sold 5.6 million smartphones in the fourth quarter of 2013 and 20.5 million smartphones for the year. It is unclear how many of those smartphones were iPhones as the carrier is following Verizon Wireless and AT&T in not breaking down its smartphone sales or activations by platform.

Sprint added 682,000 customers in the last three months of the calendar year, bringing its total customer base to 53.9 million subscribers. Total retail postpaid churn was 2.15%, down slightly from the 2.18% measured in the year ago quarter. The company reported a loss of $1 billion, which is less than the $1.3 billion it lost in Q4 2012.
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Sprint ended the year with 53.9 million Sprint platform subscribers - its highest level ever - after adding 58,000 postpaid subscribers, 322,000 prepaid subscribers and 302,000 wholesale and affiliate subscribers in the fourth quarter. Sprint sold 5.6 million smartphones in the fourth quarter and 20.5 million smartphones for the year with smartphone sales mix reaching 95 percent for postpaid and 66 percent for prepaid in the quarter.
Earlier this year, Sprint competitor Verizon announced smartphone activations of 8.8 million along with 1.7 million new subscribers in Q4 2013, while AT&T activated 1.2M postpaid smartphones and gained 809,000 new subscribers in the quarter.

Sprint becomes the first US carrier to lose money this quarter as it continues to struggle. Recent rumors suggest Sprint parent company Softbank may be interested in acquiring rival T-Mobile, but regulators have already expressed opposition to the deal.

Article Link: Sprint Sells 5.6M Smartphones in Q4 2013, Stops Reporting iPhone Numbers
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 09:40 AM   #2
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It is unclear how many of those smartphones were iPhones as the carrier is following Verizon Wireless and AT&T in not breaking down its smartphone sales or activations by platform.
All of these US carriers march in lock-step, whether it be pricing, these new "next" plans, and now not breaking down smartphone sales. Who benefits from this?

As usual, it all stinks of collusion and there should've been a congressional hearing years ago, but they get away with it every time. Just one of the perks of being a subsidiary of the man, I guess.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 09:40 AM   #3
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Sprint better not buy T-Mobile.

T-Mobile is shaking up this industry and having lots of success. Sprint is an example of how NOT to run a wireless carrier.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:05 AM   #4
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Sprint better not buy T-Mobile.

T-Mobile is shaking up this industry and having lots of success. Sprint is an example of how NOT to run a wireless carrier.
DOJ has already expressed opposition to the deal. The only way it happens would most likely require both carriers to divest of some spectrum (which neither could really afford to do).

I'd also think Sprint shareholders would HAVE to remember the cluster-f that buying Nextel created. That was a match made in hell. I hated that Sprint bought Nextel because as a then-Nextel customer, things went to ****. Quickly. That would happen with T-Mobile too, I'm certain.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:07 AM   #5
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There is NO reason for anybody to be on Sprint. If they are trying to save $$$ then T-Mobile is the only valuable option. T-Mobile beats Sprint in every aspect, considering their GSM/EDGE beats Sprint's EV-DO. Pathetic.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:12 AM   #6
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Whats the logic behind not reporting iPhone numbers? It seems like all of the big carriers are doing this now.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:19 AM   #7
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$1 billion dollar loss ouch. Wonder how Son feels about his investment right about now?
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:23 AM   #8
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Whats the logic behind not reporting iPhone numbers? It seems like all of the big carriers are doing this now.
What was the logic behind reporting them in the first place? Carriers didn't report activations by brand until the iPhone.

It was pretty clear that it was an Apple requirement then, so perhaps it's an Apple requirement now that they stop.

(Reporting activations was misleading anyway, since it included activations of used devices, which was usually about 10% of iPhone numbers. But since most people confused activations with sales, it always worked to Apple's PR advantage.)

In short, it feels like another Tim Cook change, similar to changing forecasts to be more reasonable.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:24 AM   #9
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There is NO reason for anybody to be on Sprint. If they are trying to save $$$ then T-Mobile is the only valuable option. T-Mobile beats Sprint in every aspect, considering their GSM/EDGE beats Sprint's EV-DO. Pathetic.
No, there are areas outside of major metro regions where T-Mobile coverage is lacking compared to even Sprint.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:27 AM   #10
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Whats the logic behind not reporting iPhone numbers? It seems like all of the big carriers are doing this now.
Actually what would be the point of reporting the numbers now (other than that we'd like to know)?

As a carrier they only want to report on how many subscribers they're signing up and by reporting number of smartphone subscribers they are telling how many data plans they are adding so those numbers are relevant. An iPhone and a Samsung, Motorola, or any other smartphone all subscribe to pretty much the same plan, so there is no reason to break out iPhone activations.

When there was carrier exclusivity, it made some sense, as ATT could point out how many subscribers their deal with Apple was bringing in. And as Verizon and others first jumped on board, they wanted to point out how many customers they were potentially winning back. Now that all carriers have had the iPhone for a while, there's probably not much switching going on just because the carrier offers the iPhone...which was the only reason the carriers would announce those numbers.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:28 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Dookieman View Post
Whats the logic behind not reporting iPhone numbers? It seems like all of the big carriers are doing this now.
Initially there was buzz generated by having the iPhone on your network. In 2014 not so much. Now a smartphone is a smartphone is a smartphone.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:41 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by kdarling View Post
What was the logic behind reporting them in the first place? Carriers didn't report activations by brand until the iPhone.

It was pretty clear that it was an Apple requirement then, so perhaps it's an Apple requirement now that they stop.

(Reporting activations was misleading anyway, since it included activations of used devices, which was usually about 10% of iPhone numbers. But since most people confused activations with sales, it always worked to Apple's PR advantage.)

In short, it feels like another Tim Cook change, similar to changing forecasts to be more reasonable.
No, not an Apple requirement. ATT did it to snub competitors in the face because they had an exclusive. Others followed that trend, thats all. In reality, Numbers sales is both a blessing and a curse to Apple. If one carrier slumps, a ton of assumptions are made on the stock market about Apple. however, w/o numbers, it can be hard to state Apple has leverage over carriers.

----------

At this point, Sprint has received some hard opposition from both DoJ and FCC. With T-Mobile being strong and profitable, it's very unlikely that DoJ/FCC position will change. Why allow a 3rd strong carrier merge with a failing one? That would just invite the possibility of one pulling down the other.

I'm betting DoJ and FCC would rather see Sprint fail on it's own and let T-Mobile thrive.. it makes more sense.. a much safer bet.. it also shows that DoJ was right to keep ATT away from T-Mobile..

Even if Sprint fails, it can be said that it would have happened regardless and we'd be down to a 2 horse race with ATT/Verizon and no 3rd or 4th if ATT had been allowed to take over T-Mobile.

Last, any merger would likely see John L. outed as CEO from T-Mobile.. If Johns gone, so is Uncarrier.. say hello to contracts and higher prices and goodbye to market disrupter.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 10:50 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by MattMJB0188 View Post
There is NO reason for anybody to be on Sprint. If they are trying to save $$$ then T-Mobile is the only valuable option. T-Mobile beats Sprint in every aspect, considering their GSM/EDGE beats Sprint's EV-DO. Pathetic.
Well, there's also corporate discounts. I currently get 10% off AT&T through Ohio State and I know that other companies give bigger discounts. My one friend has Sprint and his dad gets like a 20% discount. Another has Verizon and he gets like a 28% discount. I'm about to switch to T-Mobile and I found out that I get a 15% discount I think.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 11:26 AM   #14
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No, there are areas outside of major metro regions where T-Mobile coverage is lacking compared to even Sprint.
But in many places, Sprint's service sucks even when there's good "coverage." At least T-Mobile's actually works when you do have coverage.

4 or 5 bars of Sprint LTE = 0.3Mb download and 0.01Mb upload, last time I tested from my work phone (galaxy 3s). Yes, the upload speed is almost as fast as dialup from the early 1990's. And this has been consistent, every time I've tested it over the past year, in multiple locations around my city. But at least it's UNLIMITED!

I switched from Sprint to Verizon for my personal phone, now happy getting 30Mb+ download speeds in the same coverage area. It's a different experience having a phone that actually has a working data connection....
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 11:51 AM   #15
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No, there are areas outside of major metro regions where T-Mobile coverage is lacking compared to even Sprint.
T-Mobile is relatively young compared to Sprint. So yes, it is acceptable that some areas still lack.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 12:17 PM   #16
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Why allow a 3rd strong carrier merge with a failing one? That would just invite the possibility of one pulling down the other.
The parent company of T-Mobile doesn't want to own T-Mobile. If not allowed to sell it to someone like Sprint, there is a good chance they will just start selling off the assets till it's gone (spectrum etc). T-Mobile will be eventually gone one way or another unless the T-Mobile parent company changes their mind.

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T-Mobile is relatively young compared to Sprint. So yes, it is acceptable that some areas still lack.
I use/like T-Mobile and the coverage outside the metro areas is poor compared to the others. I would never get Sprint but Sprint has better coverage and it's more than some areas.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 12:29 PM   #17
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but in many places, sprint's service sucks even when there's good "coverage." at least t-mobile's actually works when you do have coverage.

4 or 5 bars of sprint lte = 0.3mb download and 0.01mb upload, last time i tested from my work phone (galaxy 3s). Yes, the upload speed is almost as fast as dialup from the early 1990's. And this has been consistent, every time i've tested it over the past year, in multiple locations around my city. But at least it's unlimited!

I switched from sprint to verizon for my personal phone, now happy getting 30mb+ download speeds in the same coverage area. It's a different experience having a phone that actually has a working data connection....
Click image for larger version

Name:	uploadfromtaptalk1392139808138.jpg
Views:	108
Size:	48.7 KB
ID:	460510
YMMV. I've seen Verizon barely pull 1Mbps as well.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 12:43 PM   #18
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Initially there was buzz generated by having the iPhone on your network. In 2014 not so much. Now a smartphone is a smartphone is a smartphone.
That's totally not true. Sprint is just losing across-the-board that's why they are not reporting numbers of individual Smart phones
But yet and still the other three report iPhone numbers. The iPhone is still extremely relevant don't get it twisted
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 01:31 PM   #19
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Makes sense. Why create bad will with the other cell phone manufacturers by showing how poorly their phones sell compared to iPhones?
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 02:08 PM   #20
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But yet and still the other three report iPhone numbers. The iPhone is still extremely relevant don't get it twisted
None of the top four mobile companies are reporting iPhone numbers now.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 02:45 PM   #21
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That's totally not true. Sprint is just losing across-the-board that's why they are not reporting numbers of individual Smart phones
But yet and still the other three report iPhone numbers. The iPhone is still extremely relevant don't get it twisted
What exactly would I be getting twisted? None of the other telcos report iPhone numbers anymore. Now if you can provide any proof I will gladly retract my statement. Let me save you some time. They no longer report iPhone sales.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 06:45 PM   #22
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That's totally not true. Sprint is just losing across-the-board that's why they are not reporting numbers of individual Smart phones
But yet and still the other three report iPhone numbers. The iPhone is still extremely relevant don't get it twisted
Wrong,

Please read the story, Sprint in line with Verizon/ATT and TMO are not reporting iPhone numbers. Sprint posted a small, but gain of subs last qtr.
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 07:18 PM   #23
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Attachment 460510ymmv. I've seen Verizon barely pull 1Mbps as well.
isn't that a speed test over wifi?
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Old Feb 11, 2014, 07:35 PM   #24
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isn't that a speed test over wifi?
No, it was done over LTE at a previously time. I was connected to WiFi when I took the screenshot.
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Old Feb 12, 2014, 08:50 AM   #25
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No, there are areas outside of major metro regions where T-Mobile coverage is lacking compared to even Sprint.
Agreed! Thankfully Sprint loves Baltimore, otherwise I'd be paying twice as much for crappy AT&T or Verizon service, or I'd be paying the same price for T-Mobile and have 5 phones to choose from, 3 of which would be iPhones.

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But in many places, Sprint's service sucks even when there's good "coverage." At least T-Mobile's actually works when you do have coverage.
It all depends on where you live. In Baltimore, I can be on the Metro and have coverage. I've had no bars on 4G and was still able to pull down webpages reasonably. Sure, there are dead zones that drop calls instantly, but I am no first world whine boy . . . . I'll just call them back.
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