Sprint reported increased losses for what it described as “an historic time” for the company, having recently closed its Nextel network and completed various deals with SoftBank, Clearwire and US Cellular.

In line with its Network Vision modernisation project, Sprint also said that it has switched on its LTE network in 41 new markets, taking its total to 151. The company is looking to cover 200 million people with its network by the end of 2013.

The company has not so-far provided details of its LTE service uptake by consumers.

The company reported a loss for the quarter of $1.6 billion, compared with $1.37 billion in the prior-year period, on revenue of $8.88 billion, up slightly from $8.74 billion.

On an operating level, it saw a loss of $874 million, compared with $629 million.

It noted accelerated depreciation of around $430 million and non-cash charges of $623 million related to the Nextel network shut-down, although it also saw significant charges related to this business in the prior-year period.

For its Wireless unit, it saw service revenue of $7.24 billion, up from $6.73 billion. This business saw an operating loss of $864 million, compared with $681 million.

The company said it saw contract subscriber additions in its Sprint-branded operators for the 13th consecutive quarter, matched with the 11th consecutive quarter of year-on-year postpaid ARPU growth.

But, “as expected”, Sprint lost prepaid customers as a result of planned deactivations related to regulatory changes impacting its low-ARPU Assurance brand.

The company lost 1.06 million contract customers and 255,000 prepaid users through the Nextel switch-off.

It ended the period with 30.45 million contract subscribers and 15.22 million prepaid users. Alongside 7.7 million wholesale subscribers, this gives a total of 53.38 million customers.