New subscriber figures from Deutsche Telekom show that it added 7.6 million net new mobile subscribers in 2008, pushing its total mobile customer base up 6.3% year-on-year to 128.3 million. However, the annual growth was tempered by a weak fourth quarter, which saw net additions fall by 55% compared to the same period a year earlier.
The US and Germany, grew by 9.8% (to 32.8 million) and 8.8% (to 36 million), respectively, though both saw net additions decline in the final quarter. The UK stood out as the operator's weakest market in 2008, with subscribers declining 3% over the year, a net subscriber loss of 526,000.
T-Mobile attributed its successes to tariffs such as 'MyFaves' in the US, and the strong uptake of handsets such as Apple's iPhone 3G and the Android-based T-Mobile G1.
However, some analysts noted that the company's mobile division had underperformed compared to its other businesses. 'The main disappointment came from the mobile side, whereas domestic broadband/fixed network performed ahead of our expectations,' Dexia analyst Rob Goyens told Bloomberg.