AT&T on Wednesday reported that it added 72,000 postpaid phone subscribers in the second quarter, compared to 51,000 a year ago, as the carrier continues to bolster its network with FirstNet deployments and prepares for broad 5G coverage next year.
In total AT&T lost 154,000 net postpaid subscribers, but added 341,000 prepaid subs, including 283,000 prepaid phone connections. Postpaid phone churn for the three-month period was 0.86%, up from 0.82% in the year ago period. Total postpaid churn was 1.08%
Overall, AT&T added 3.9 million net wireless subscribers in the second quarter. AT&T now has about 159.6 million total mobility connections and customers, including 76.2 million postpaid wireless subscribers and 58.3 million connected devices.
Wireless service revenue for the quarter was up 2.4% to $14 billion, while equipment revenue dipped to $3.5 billion
Still, AT&T noted that total revenue from its mobility business was up 1.3% to $17.5 billion, even with customers upgrading at historically low rates.
Overall, second-quarter net income was $3.7 billion, with consolidated revenues up 15.3% to $45 billion, mainly related to AT&T’s acquisition of Time Warner last year.
“We’re halfway through the year and on track to deliver on all our 2019 priorities,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and CEO, in a statement. “We continue to pay down debt and are more confident than ever that we’ll meet our year-end deleveraging goal, and we’ll take a look at buying back stock. Our FirstNet build is not only running ahead of schedule – it’s become a driver of our wireless network leadership in speed, reliability and network performance. It also sets us up to have nationwide commercially available 5G coverage in the first half of 2020.”
As the carrier continues its FirstNet build, AT&T expects to have an average of 150 MHz of spectrum deployed per pop in its top 100 markets by year-end.