Sprint is preparing to add small cells to its network to expand the reach of its LTE service, and that effort will most likely cost the carrier around $500 million per year in labor and hardware costs, according to estimates from one Wall Street analyst firm.
With a somewhat bumpy fourth-quarter reporting season expected for the Tier 1 wireless carriers, analysts at Jefferies are hoping for more "rational" pricing behavior from the large operators in 2015.
The continued subscriber momentum at T-Mobile, coupled with solid expected results from Verizon Wireless AT&T Mobility could mean that Sprint struggled in the fourth-quarter to win many net postpaid subscribers, according to financial analysts.
Sprint is reaping the rewards of its December promotion in which the company offered to cut customers' bills in half if they switch from Verizon Wireless or AT&T Mobility a nd buy a new Sprint phone. Speaking Wednesday at the 2015 Citi Global Internet, Media & Telecommunications Conference, Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure said that in the fourth quarter the company had a total number of net adds approaching close to 1 million. This compares to the fourth quarter of 2013, when the company added just 477,000 new subscribers.
T-Mobile US ended the year with a bang, adding 2.1 million total net wireless customers in the fourth quarter, capping a strong year of growth for the carrier. T-Mobile CEO John Legere has pledged to pass Sprint in subscribers to become the nation's No. 3 carrier largest carrier by subscribers in 2015.
Verizon Communications may be talking to AOL about a potential content partnership, but it is not interested in acquiring the company. Speaking at the 2015 Citi Global Internet, Media & Telecommunications conference in Las Vegas today, Verizon Chairman and CEO Lowell McAdam said that yesterday's Bloomberg report claiming that Verizon approached AOL about a potential acquisition or joint venture is inaccurate. "I think of AOL and a lot of other media companies as potential partners," he said. "But saying we are having significant acquisition discussions is not accurate."
T-Mobile US CEO John Legere is not giving his rivals a holiday break, vowing to compete head on with Verizon Wireless in terms of network quality and surpass Sprint in subscribers to become the nation's No. 3 carrier in 2015.
Sprint's Boost Mobile prepaid brand said its promotional pricing--which offers customers more data than in previous plans--is now the carrier's permanent pricing. The carrier also launches a new Android smartphone from ZTE in addition to the previously announced Microsoft Lumia 635 Windows Phone device.
Sprint executives said throughout 2014 that they planned to launch carrier aggregation technology on the company's 2.5 GHz TD-LTE service by the end of this year. However, the company now expects to miss that goal will instead launch the technology sometime in early 2015.
2014 is nearly at and end and it's the time of the year when there are countless year-end review articles and 2015 predictions. While there were many highlights of 2014, I choose to hone in on network and competition. Instead of predictions, my 2015 expectations have been laid out with technology paths and the previous year's events.