Clearwire adds 87,000 WiMAX subs in 4Q

Clearwire made good on the CEO Bill Morrow's promise that the WiMAX operator's fourth-quarter subscriber additions would exceed all of the previous three quarters of 2009 combined. The company added 87,000 net new subscribers, bringing its total subscriber base to 688,000.

Clearwire also revealed that 46,000 of those customers came from the operator's wholesale partners Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Sprint. Morrow again reiterated the company's strategy of signing on more wholesale partners such as ISPs, fixed-line operators, retailers and consumer electronics companies.

The operator said it has significantly more mobile WiMAX subscribers than pre-WiMAX customers. Customers on Clearwire's mobile WiMAX service numbered 438,000 out of the total 688,000. Churn reached 3.6 percent during the quarter and 3.1 percent for the year as Clearwire executives said they were aggressively transitioning pre-WiMAX customers onto the mobile WiMAX network. Total revenue for 2009 increased 19 percent to $274.5 million.

Clearwire said it plans to launch several new markets in 2010. Houston will be the first to go live in the next few weeks. Other planned launches this year include New York City, San Francisco, Boston, Washington, D.C., Denver, Minneapolis and Kansas City. The company  also said it has more than 30 embedded devices available, including netbook and notebook computers.

For more:
- read this FierceWireless article
- see this WSJ article (sub. req.)
- see this release

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