T-Mobile Leads In Q4 Postpaid Phone Gains

Legere: Carrier balancing growth, profitability as income rises
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T-Mobile is successfully balancing subscriber growth with profitability, T-Mobile president/CEO John Legere declared in releasing the carrier’s fourth-quarter financial results.

The quarter ending December marked the 11th consecutive quarter of more than 1 million total net adds, consisting of branded postpaid phones, branded prepaid phones, postpaid tablets, other postpaid data devices, and MNVO subscriptions. It was also the carrier’s third consecutive quarter of more than 2 million total net adds.

On top of that, it was the sixth consecutive quarter of more than 1 million postpaid net adds (consisting of phones, tablets and other data devices,) T-Mobile announced.

The quarter also marked the eighth consecutive quarter in which T-Mobile led the industry in postpaid phone net adds, which hit 917,000. Postpaid phone subscribers are the most lucrative type of subscribers

For all of 2015, Legere said, the company captured all of the industry’s postpaid phone growth.

Here’s what the financial report shows:

Total revenues: Total revenues for the quarter rose 1.1 percent to $8.25 billion and for the year rose 8.4 percent to $32.05 billon.

Net income: Net for the quarter hit $297 million, up almost three times from the year-ago quarter. For the year, net income hit $733 million, up 197 percent from the year ago.

Total subscriber base: The number of total subscribers grew to 63.28 million from year-end 2014’s 55.02 million.

Total net adds: The numbers, though high, were nonetheless down for the quarter and year. For the quarter, total net adds fell to 2.06 million from the year-ago 2.128 million. For the year, they fell to 8.264 million from 2014’s 8.334 million.

Branded postpaid phone net ads: Despite the outsized gains, net adds were down for the quarter and year. The fourth quarter was down slightly to 917,000 from the year-ago 1.037 million. For the year, postpaid phone net adds fell to 3.511 million from 2014’s 4.047 million.

AT&T, in contrast, lost a net 1.5 million postpaid phone subscribers in 2015, Legere said.

Branded prepaid net adds: Net adds were up for the quarter and year. For the quarter, net adds rose to 469,000 from the year-ago 266,000. For the year, the number rose to 1.3 million from 1.24 million.

MVNO net adds: The figure hit 310,000 for the quarter and 2.4 million for the year.

Total branded postpaid net adds: Consisting of phones and data devices such as tablets, the quarterly number fell for the quarter and year. They fell in the quarter to 1.276 million from the year-ago 1.292 million. For the year, they fell to 4.51 million from 4.886 million.

Churn: Branded postpaid phone churn fell 27 basis points from the year ago quarter to 1.46 percent, while branded prepaid phone churn  fell to 4.2 percent from the year-ago 5.39 percent.

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