From the 'Can you hear me now?' guy to Catherine Zeta-Jones: Top 10 wireless carrier spokespeople

By Phil Goldstein

When T-Mobile USA announced its "Uncarrier" strategy in late March it also revealed that it would effectively be sidelining its spokeswoman Carly Foulkes, widely known as the T-Mobile Girl. She first appeared in pretty magenta-tinged dresses and then in the spring of 2012 started donning the black leather of a biker as part of T-Mobile's "No More Mr. Nice Girl" campaign to highlight the carrier's "4G" HSPA+ network.

"The current campaign will not feature the character of the T-Mobile Girl, however she is still a part of the company's brand family," a T-Mobile spokesperson told Business Insider.

So, in theory, Carly could make a comeback, but more than likely she'll be pushed aside for T-Mobile's new "Uncarrier" messaging, which so far features an ad with cowboys designed to highlight how T-Mobile is breaking with other carriers by ditching contracts.

Carly's departure got the editors of FierceWireless thinking about other spokespeople who have appeared over the years (and there have been a lot of them). Some spokespeople have become so indelibly etched in our collective consciousness that it's difficult to think of the products they pitched without thinking of them: Joe DiMaggio for Mr. Coffee; Michael Jordan for Nike (and Hanes, and Gatorade…); and, of course, Bill Cosby for Jell-O.

But what about wireless carrier spokespeople? Which ones really mattered, and why? What did they do for the brands they represented, and how? What about their messaging resonated with the brand and with consumers?

FierceWireless has come up with the following top 10 carrier spokespeople. We ranked them based on several criteria, including their duration as spokespeople, how recognizable they are, and, subjectively, what impact their presence and marketing message had on the brand of the carrier they represented.

What do you think? Are there other spokespeople who deserve to be on the list? Let us know in the comments!

From the 'Can you hear me now?' guy to Catherine Zeta-Jones: Top 10 wireless carrier spokespeople