Sprint's net income plummets 77 percent in Q3

Sprint Nextel reported third quarter net income of $64 million, a 77 percent drop from last year's respective quarter. Earnings fell to 23 cents a share from 32 cents a share this time last year and revenue dropped 4.2 percent to $10.04 billion. Total wireless revenue dropped a commensurate 4.1 percent to $8.7 billion. The grim financial situation coupled with the previously announced postpaid subscriber loss for the quarter--337,000 subs--explained the departure of CEO Gary Forsee during the quarter.

Acting CEO and CFO Paul Saleh said the board is looking for a new CEO: "We're working to fill the role as expeditiously as possible... We're not standing still," Saleh said during the conference call.

Sprint's ARPU fell 3 percent year-over-year to just more than $59, while churn dropped to 2.3 percent, from 2.4 percent last year. Here's a chart comparing Sprint's ARPU to previous quarters and other carriers' metrics (click to see tables for net subscribers and churn):

For more on Sprint's Q3:
- read this press release