Sprint yesterday said that it is de-emphasizing its Virgin Mobile prepaid brand and may introduce a new strategy for the Virgin brand at some point in the future. The news highlights Sprint's continued struggles in the prepaid sector, mainly due to the successes that T-Mobile's MetroPCS prepaid brand and AT&T's Cricket Wireless prepaid brand have had in the market.
Whether it is Verizon's colored balls commercial or T-Mobile CEO John Legere's infamous competition rants, it's clear that wireless operators spend a lot of money advertising their brands.
FirstLight Fiber is enhancing its fiber diet by adding 36,000 miles into New York's Westchester, Rockland and Orange counties, enabling it to fulfill a mix of wireless backhaul and enterprise service opportunities.
As the FCC begins to cull through the mountains of data on special access services, USTelecom, the industry forum focused on incumbent telcos, says the regulator should consider how cable has become a dominant force in the business segment.
Sprint CTO John Saw said that the company is looking at ways to reduce backhaul costs by using its 2.5 GHz spectrum assets to provide wireless backhaul for small cells instead of fiber. In addition, Saw said the company will use dark fiber for backhaul, which may not be cheaper than traditional fiber but will allow the operator more control over the speed and capacity of the backhaul circuit.
No wonder Sprint was in such a hurry to release its fiscal third-quarter earnings. The foundering carrier posted a solid quarter, reporting 501,000 postpaid net additions, up from just 30,000 year-over-year, and an adjusted EBITDA of $1.9 billion, far outpacing Wall Street estimates. It posted net operating revenue of $8.1 billion, however, falling just shy of analysts' expectations of $8.2 billion.
Sprint has slashed 2,500 jobs in a third round of layoffs as it continues to trim its budget. The jobs, which represent roughly 7 percent of its workforce, will primarily be lost from closing call centers, according to a Reuters report.
Sprint's network still includes working Huawei equipment despite the carrier's 2013 vow to remove or destroy gear from the Chinese company, according to a LightReading report.
Sprint said it has doubled the number of markets in which it offers "LTE Plus" and cited recent Nielsen data indicating its network is faster than those of Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile. And the beleaguered carrier criticized some other network-measurement methods used by its competitors.
Speaking to the media on the heels of the deadline to submit comments for the FCC's special access proceeding, Charles McKee, VP of government affairs for federal and state regulatory at Sprint, said wireless backhaul costs the carrier pays to ILECs have continued to rise.