Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg (pictured) highlighted the transformative potential for employing AI and generative AI (GenAI) across the operator’s network and for personalisation of tariffs as he discussed the operator’s performance during Q1.

On its earnings call, Vestberg said Verizon is taking a three-pronged approach to AI, noting it has deployed both forms.  

The first approach is using AI to optimise internal processes and operations, for example creating efficiencies for fuel and power consumption.

Secondly, the operator is also using it to develop personalised recommendations for customers across its myPlan tariffs, which the CEO noted “is producing good early results”. Vestberg stated enabling AI at scale for improved customer service is a key area of focus.

Lastly, he explained Verizon is developing an AI-based revenue stream by commercialising its 5G network and mobile edge compute capabilities with the technology.

“Generating AI workloads represent a great long-term opportunity for us,” he stated. “There are multiple places we see efficiencies, but also revenue opportunities with all the new technologies coming”.

Vestberg and CFO Tony Skiadas credited the operator’s promotional incentives including bundled streaming services from Netflix and Max across its myPlan tariffs for a 3.3 per cent year-on-year increase in wireless service revenue to $19.5 billion.

Skiadas said myPlan had been “instrumental in growing our premium mix, which now stands at 42 per cent of our post-paid phone base”.

Verizon lost 158,000 wireless retail post-paid phone subscribers compared with 263,000 in Q1 2023.

Consumer wireless retail post-paid phone churn was up slightly to 0.83 per cent.

Vestberg noted it was the operator’s best Q1 post-paid phone net performance since 2018. 

The operator recorded 90,000 post-paid phone net additions across its business sector.

Retail prepaid net losses stood at 216,000, not including 131,000 subscribers from the government-sponsored Affordable Connectivity Programme (ACP).

Skiadas noted Verizon stopped signing up ACP users in February as funding is expected to end over the coming weeks.

Verizon Business’ fixed wireless access (FWA) broadband additions were 151,000, its best quarter to date, while consumer additions hit 203,000.

FWA revenue was $452 million compared with $197 million in Q1 2023. The service accounted for 3.4 million of the operator’s 11.1 million total broadband subscribers.

Total revenue of $32.9 billion was up 2 per cent, with net income of $4.7 billion down 5.9 per cent.