T-Mobile US claimed its latest quarterly results is further evidence that its ‘un-carrier’ approach to the mobile industry is paying off, with the country’s fourth-largest operator touting 1.023 million net customer additions during the third quarter.
“T-Mobile’s un-carrier approach is resonating with consumers,” said John Legere (pictured), president and CEO, in a prepared statement. “We added more than 1 million customers and led the industry with 643,000 branded postpaid phone additions because we are fixing the things that drive customers crazy.” The company ended the quarter with 45 million customers.
The operator sold 5.6 million smartphone units, 88 per cent of total phone unit sales. iPhone sales represented 15 per cent of total smartphone sales on the T-Mobile brand, equating to 840,000 iPhones. However, the company admitted it could have sold more iPhones if it hadn’t experienced supply issues from Apple.
Revenue in the period rose 7.4 per cent thanks to the addition of MetroPCS to T-Mobile’s finances from May, as well as record smartphone sales. The firm’s adjusted earnings before tax and interest (EBITDA) was $1.34 billion, up 6.2 percent quarter-over-quarter and attributed to lower promotional expenditures compared to the second quarter.
Legere continued: “Part of our customer momentum comes from the MetroPCS acquisition. With MetroPCS we are making great progress, including the planned additional expansion of the MetroPCS brand into another 15 additional markets by November 21 [bringing the total of expansion markets to 30 by the end of this month]. Our momentum is great and we have confidence that we can continue to deliver sustainable and profitable growth.”
Legere has spent much of this year ruffling feathers in the mobile industry, calling the sector “stupid, broken and arrogant”. In March T-Mobile US unveiled simplified tariff plans with no annual contract, and followed this up in July with the launch of Jump, an initiative that enables customers to upgrade their devices twice a year for a fee (rather than locking them into two-year contracts). And last month the operator scrapped data roaming fees for 2G services and promised free data for life for tablet customers.
All of Legere’s plans are designed to help the smallest nationwide wireless carrier in the US claw back market share from rivals.
“Our uncarrier strategy continues to differentiate us from the competition,” added Legere on a conference call with analysts. “We are going to continue to be disruptive but we will do it smartly and profitably.”