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Should Verizon, Sprint and AT&T be afraid of T-Mobile?

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Should Verizon, Sprint and AT&T be afraid of T-Mobile?
With a number of industry leading innovations, T-Mobile has not only become the carrier to watch in the U.S., it is actually taking market share away from the other three major stateside operators. According to the average estimate from seven analysts, T-Mobile will report the addition of 444,000 net new subscribers in their next earnings report due to be released November 5th.

Compare T-Mobile's estimated net additions to the 363,000 that AT&T recently reported. And if it weren't for tablets, the carrier would have lost subscribers in the period. Most likely T-Mobile took business away from Verizon and Sprint along with AT&T. T-Mobile has led the way with the elimination of subsidized equipment purchases, allowing earlier phone upgrades for certain customers and the removal of international roaming charges. Last week, the nation's fourth largest carrier announced that it would give away 200MB of data each month free to its customers with tablets that have cellular connectivity. Not only might this have an affect on tablet-heavy AT&T, the free data for tablet owners could also hurt Verizon. About 40% of Verizon's 927,000 net new additions in the third quarter are said to have been tablet users.

In its last quarterly report, T-Mobile reported that its churn figure, which represents the percentage of customers leaving the carrier, was 1.58%. That is down from the 2.1% churn rate reported the previous year. Besides the changes that T-Mobile has made, the operator finally added the Apple iPhone to its lineup earlier this year. Now what T-Mobile needs, according to some analysts, is a way to attract family plan users. Such subscribers are believed to make up 90% of AT&T's customer list.

T-Mobile also has a dynamic CEO in John Legere, who has been compared to a rock star with his casual attire and longish hair. Legere says his mind, going as far as calling AT&T's network "crap" at this year's CES, and is a refreshing change to the usual pinstriped, buttoned down, uptight CEO. He is obviously the right person to lead the carrier as it starts its ascension to a loftier place among the four major U.S. mobile operators. Should the other carriers be concerned about this upstart? Joe Pasqualichio, an analyst at Eaton Vance, says of T-Mobile, "they're clearly having an impact." he said

source: Reuters

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posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:08 20

1. ihatesmartphone (unregistered)

Go T-Mobile. Go T-Mobile.
Be the best and beat the rest!

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:26 2

5. icyrock1 (Posts: 307; Member since: 25 Mar 2013)


Though, sadly they don't have good coverage where I live (even though they do have HSPA+ 42, it's spotty at best) so the best I can do I cheer them on from afar.

I *really* want them to get there coverage up to par (it's not like we're a small city, either. Were the 90th biggest in the USA)!

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 13:05

25. Razrman (Posts: 76; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)

I have the same problem too, it works only in certain areas. If it wasn't for that, I would have changed to them.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 13:13

27. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)

The AT&T in particular should be worried about T-Mo. If T-Mo had a larger network footprint, AT&T would not be adding subscribers.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 14:24

36. JC557 (Posts: 1515; Member since: 07 Dec 2011)

Exactly, the moment T-Mobile's network comes close to matching that of the major two networks they should start worrying. Heck, I would go to T-Mo in a heartbeat if their network becomes almost as large as Verizon. Good pricing, lower/ no roaming charges and mostly interchangeable phones (they require an extra band) can't be beat.

I remember my first cell phone back when I was in high school: Motorola T720 on T-Mobile. That thing was reliable and so was the network, provided I didn't venture out too far from the main interstates or major cities.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 14:56 3

39. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)

T-mobiles network footprint now includes over 100 countries.
T-mobile has the largest network by far.

At&t charges $120 for 800mb of data if you happen to drive the 5 miles from detroit to windsor.

T-mobile charges nothing.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 16:43

50. Shatter (Posts: 2036; Member since: 29 May 2013)

Their network is usually the best in cities, its outside of cities were its bad.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 18:37 2

56. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)

Most international businessmen spend most of their time in cities as well. WiN

posted on 27 Oct 2013, 05:57

69. Daftama (Posts: 619; Member since: 03 Nov 2012)

People people people your are forgetting... What were AT&T and Cingular plans like when they were one company... What happened when they became one of they Tmobile were to become number 2 or 1 in some weird way what do you think will happen

posted on 28 Oct 2013, 11:26

75. nghtwng68 (Posts: 92; Member since: 26 Nov 2009)

Left at&t in late May after trumped up charges, dropped calls and bad signal connections and haven't regretted it not one day! Fellow at&t friends I know are still complaining. T-Mobile ROCKS!

posted on 30 Nov 2013, 22:31

78. voyagerair (Posts: 2; Member since: 30 Nov 2013)

t-mobile is beating the shiiiit out the others big 3.
Nowadays, when ppl pay over $70/month, they need to have unlimitted date on 4G LTE. Simple as that.
neither AT&T, Sprint, nor Verizon can offer this plan.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:11 13

2. softfurryanus (banned) (Posts: 232; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)

I've heard the coverage is alright, step that up and I would say AT&T and Verizon should be pretty scared, and Sprint probably already is...

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 14:20 1

35. PAPINYC (banned) (Posts: 2315; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)

Well, you're ¼ right, Sprint should be scared ch¡tless, especially since their Network is pretty sparse as it is. AT&T does have a larger 4G LTE footprint but, not big enough to be at ease and, therefore, they should have some concerns. Verizon, on the other hand, well, that's like comparing an old broken down passenger bus somewhere in the desert to a Stealth fighter jet, where, of course, Verizon is the Stealth fighter jet and T-Mobile is that old broken down passenger bus still running on synthetic diesel fuel, clankering away with a bad clutch and being driven by a dimented moody blind driver suffering from Parkinson's and Alzheimers and insisting he's Einstein.

Verizon has nothing to be scared of; sure, T-Mobile is offering "Free Tethering" but, good luck getting actual service. By the way, I have "Free Tethering" too; it's called PDA.net with FoxFi key. lol .....

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 15:02 3

40. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)

Verizon charges $250/GB for international roaming data, even more in some countries.

T-mobile charges nothing.

Verizon should be pissing themselves over all the corporate business they'll lose to t-mobile.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 15:15 1

42. PAPINYC (banned) (Posts: 2315; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)

Pay "nothing", get "nothing"!

Ever heard of just getting a local prepaid SIM in your host country; easy to do now with many Verizon 4G LTE smart phones as, most are SIM unlocked.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 15:27 3

44. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)

Forget that hassle.
Why should I do extra work?
My carrier works for me.
My carrier is T-mobile.

When was the last time that At&t or verizon introduced a feature or plan option that did something other than bloat your phone, end unlimited data, or cost you more money?

T-mobile is giving new things to its customers every day. I have not seen one bill increase during this period!

John Legere is an amazing CEO.

There is a reason why the nexus 5 is not coming to verizon.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 15:48 2

47. PAPINYC (banned) (Posts: 2315; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)

Well, congratu'malations!! I hope you and the big Magenta are happy!

Incidentally, I haven't seen a bill increase in 8 years and I have Unlimited Data 4G LTE.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 18:51 1

59. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)

I am so happy with my free international data/voice/text roaming, my free 200mb of data on my tablet every month, my 6 month upgrade cycle, my nexus devices, and my free LTE and 42mbps HSPA tethering!!!

This is where i would say that I pay $70/mo and verizon would charge $300+ a month, but the truth is that Verizon doesnt even offer these features.

posted on 27 Oct 2013, 02:03 1

65. johnbftl (Posts: 281; Member since: 09 Jun 2012)

The nexus 5 isn't coming to anyone yet officially. What makes you so sure T-Mobile will carry it? What makes you so sure Verizon won't? All T-Mobile has become is a nationwide prepaid company that doesn't offer any subsidies because they can't afford to. They have a joke of an LTE network, no timetable for a rollout of VoLTE, a ridiculous ad campaign making customers think that their rent to own program is better than a subsidy, and a parent company that has so little faith in it, it's been trying to sell it off for almost half a decade. Yeah, T-Mobile works really hard for you.

posted on 27 Oct 2013, 08:06

70. PAPINYC (banned) (Posts: 2315; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)

lol .... so TRUE! +1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000................​.............

posted on 27 Oct 2013, 08:54

71. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)

Did I say nexus 5?

Tmo has the nexus 4 and nexus 7 lte. Those were the nexus devices I was referring to. Verizon has neither.

I don't have a tmo late device, but that's OK my hspa+ down speed is higher than Verizon and sprints lte in my area.

Enjoy your subsidies, contracts, bloatware, delayed upfates and $250/GB international data roaming fees on red. Those are some great 'features'.

posted on 28 Oct 2013, 17:55

76. miles16852 (Posts: 241; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)

hmm, sounds like your just jealous! LOL !

posted on 27 Oct 2013, 12:58

73. rightcue805 (Posts: 55; Member since: 08 Jul 2013)

all that means nothing if you dont travel out side of the us.

posted on 30 Nov 2013, 22:34

79. voyagerair (Posts: 2; Member since: 30 Nov 2013)

all ppl need is to get a SIM and forward their primary # to the new #.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:17 4

3. NexusPhan (Posts: 625; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)

T-Mobile's family plans are amazing when compared to the share everything plans. 5 lines for $110 on T-Mobile. Verizon and AT&T are well over double that. I think they only thing T-Mobile need to do is advertise those prices everywhere.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:21 8

4. Derekjeter (Posts: 889; Member since: 27 Oct 2011)

Verizon has nothing to worry about. Have you seen T-Mobile coverage? It's a joke compared to Verizon. I know I'm going to hear about it from T-Mobile fans, but let's be honest, it will take years for them to catch up. I would like to switch for all the perks that T-Mobile offers, but let's face it they are just like Sprint. Both give away so much to compensate for lack of service. You get what you pay for.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:34 8

7. TheLolGuy (Posts: 483; Member since: 05 Mar 2013)

You're right. But for those major metropolitan residents that don't have to travel around too much, t-mobile can be a great choice. At least their speeds have been shown to be very competitive, although building penetration has been reported to be inferior...

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:53 2

13. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10456; Member since: 14 May 2012)

Not true. T-Mobile offers faster speeds than AT&T while getting signal inside buildings such as malls or retail stores.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 12:43

21. threeline (Posts: 267; Member since: 11 Sep 2011)

If you live in PHX, T-Mobile is the way to go, the city is huge and they have great 4G coverage all the way through it. 3 lines, 2.5Gb of data, unlimited everything for 110.00 a month. Cost me 180.00 on Sprint with less than half the coverage and zero useful data and not a sniff of 4G. It used to take me 10 minutes to download an app on Sprint, what a joke.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 12:44 3

22. Shinydesert (Posts: 62; Member since: 17 Nov 2011)

I agree with you, I was happy with T-mobile but the building penetration made switch to AT&T. I work in hospitals and ER's, I used to ask every doctor and nurse about their carrier, and everyone recommended AT&T or Verizon.
Surgeons spend a lot of times on ground floors,first floors and sort of isolated OR's.
They all use AT&T, Verizon and pagers. So all this told me a lot about the carriers.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 13:08 1

26. Razrman (Posts: 76; Member since: 05 Dec 2011)

That's very correct. I work in a hospital as well and after I was testing T-Mo for a few months, had to switch back to Verizon, building penetration was horrible there.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:52 4

11. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10456; Member since: 14 May 2012)

I get full signal everywhere in Chicago for half of what you pay, so yes, I am getting what I pay for. ;)

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 14:43 4

38. Derekjeter (Posts: 889; Member since: 27 Oct 2011)

Me being new to PA, now i see what Fanboys do. I get it you will defend your carrier and or phone. Lets make a deal, you lie to your friends ill lie to my friends but lets not lie to each other. T-mobile is no even close to Verizon coverage but if it makes you feel better at night....good for you.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 17:31

54. Whateverman (Posts: 3262; Member since: 17 May 2009)

Wow, you took Smurf's response to heart there, huh?

I agree with both of you. VZW is hands down the best there is... But in Chicago, T-Mobile does get great signal strength. I live in the Chicago area too and I haven't had a dropped or missed call yet with T-Mobile. Building penetration isn't the great, but it's good enough. And the extra $60 bucks a month I save is makes up for that too. Smurf isn't being a fanboy, he's stating the truth.

posted on 28 Oct 2013, 17:59

77. miles16852 (Posts: 241; Member since: 20 Oct 2011)

i sniff another jealous idiot lol

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 15:49

48. jaychildz (Posts: 129; Member since: 31 May 2013)

Here in Chicago everybody has LTE as well, this city is too big to not be supported but in only travel to bigger cities usually so LTE/coverage is no biggie. These people are forgetting about Wi-Fi

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 17:00 1

51. PAPINYC (banned) (Posts: 2315; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)

Oh 'Papa', your "full signal everywhere in Chicago" is based on the old formula: 1x -(2g) = 1x¹. So, yes, you are getting what you pay for.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 23:08

63. WakaFlakaD (Posts: 481; Member since: 30 Apr 2011)

Chicago here as well. I've been with T-Mobile since the days of Voicestream. Only complain I had was back then I had unlocked cell phones and would never get 3G while AT&T had it. Nokia N-Series!

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:52 3

12. PBXtech (Posts: 1032; Member since: 21 Oct 2013)

Verizon loves to compare their LTE to T-Mobile's LTE, while ignoring the HSPA+ areas. When you look at it all combined, it's not as bleak as Verizon would have you think.

posted on 28 Oct 2013, 09:21

74. theoak (Posts: 324; Member since: 16 Nov 2011)

Yes and no. T-Mobile may advertise 200 cities (for example) with LTE. Okay ... but with lame building penetration ... and say 2/3 of a city being buildings ... yes ... it IS a bleak as Verizon paints it out to be.

Don't get me wrong ... I got sold on T-Mobile in the spring ... got the iPhone 5 ... outside I thought it was great ... stepped inside a building though ... EDGE. I gave them an honest effort for 4 months ... switched to AT&T. Not all areas are like this ... I get that ... $70 for unlimited of ... nothing ... is nothing but money out of my pocket.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 14:25

37. PAPINYC (banned) (Posts: 2315; Member since: 30 Jul 2011)

I completely agree with you!! Hey, this is slightly off-topic, did you ever figure out how to limit MMS size on your Note 2?

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 19:32

60. donfem (Posts: 646; Member since: 30 Mar 2011)

I guess what you pay justifies how much time sent in areas where you hardly frequent?

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:31 1

6. darkkjedii (Posts: 21206; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)

AT&T and Verizon are simply too big at this point. Sprint should probably be nervous though.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:36 1

8. lsutigers (Posts: 820; Member since: 08 Mar 2009)

I like TMO and their recent uncarrier initiatives but they just don't have the coverage. If they expand their coverage to at last where Sprint and AT&T are, I would consider switching. As far as being afraid, at this point Sprint is rapidly improving it's network and has a much greater coverage area so competitors are not standing still either.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:56 1

14. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10456; Member since: 14 May 2012)

Sprint doing it's "Network Vision" is basically a marketing gimmick. They've "completed" Chicago a few months ago, and data speeds and coverage has not changed one bit. Btw, T-Mo's coverage isn't bad at all. It was two years ago, but has greatly improved since then.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 12:18 3

19. dragon76 (Posts: 15; Member since: 24 Jun 2012)

in your area it may not be that bad but around me they are the only carrier stuck on 2G so its ok for feature phones, but smart phones not so much. I don't care how unlimited and cheap.... have you tried browsing the web with a GS4 on EDGE

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 13:39

29. lsutigers (Posts: 820; Member since: 08 Mar 2009)


I noticed you mentioned this same thing several times about Sprint's network in Chicago and that is simply NOT TRUE. I was in Chicago 2 months ago and had LTE pretty much everywhere and even 3G speeds in some areas were 1.5mbps+. Please stop spreading misinformation if you do not use Sprint.

One of our field offices at work is located in Chicago and all of our employees are on Sprint so I know for a fact this is not true.

BTW my personal service is with Verizon and my Sprint phone worked almost on par. You are just a TMO fan boy that always bashes Sprint.

An yes, I have used TMO and know first hand their coverage is sub par to AT&T and Sprint (which are about equal), not to mention Verizon.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 13:53

31. PapaSmurf (Posts: 10456; Member since: 14 May 2012)

Really? Care to visit Chicago and try to catch LTE in Downtown? Aurora? Naperville? Niles? Schaumburg? My aunt has Sprint and never catches a LTE signal. I run speed tests every time and speeds are under 5mbps and 0.4 on 3G. Face it, Sprint sucks. Period.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 14:13

33. lsutigers (Posts: 820; Member since: 08 Mar 2009)

Nah man. Not true but keep telling yourself that and I just told you I was in Chicago 2 months ago and got solid LTE in the areas you mentioned.

How is it that an office of 30+ employees with iPhone 5's get LTE all over Chicago and your aunt doesn't? She needs to have her phone checked, if you even have an aunt on Sprint, which sounds a little suspect.

I'm not even bashing your beloved TMO, in fact look at my post above #8, I praised them for shaking up the industry with their uncarrier offerings but the reality is their coverage is not even close to the big 3. And its not just me saying that, many TMO users agree that if you are in a metro area or on an interstate the service is quite good, they just can't compete when it comes to coverage in suburban area, not to mention rural.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 18:41

57. squallz506 (banned) (Posts: 1075; Member since: 19 Oct 2011)

Sprint has absolutely the worst coverage in the fox river valley cities of illinois. Honestly Sprint 3g is the worst wireless experience money can buy.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 23:11

64. lsutigers (Posts: 820; Member since: 08 Mar 2009)

Their coverage has never been an issue in Chicago, it's very good everywhere I have been. It was data speeds that used to be slow after the iPhone was released, much like what happened to AT&T who also got caught off guard with a sudden spike in customers and data usage (which there is no excuse for, they both should have known it was coming) but since Network Vision deployment in Chicago, the Sprint network is much better. They have the metro area covered with LTE and 3G has also drastically improved due to the upgrade. In most areas I got solid LTE with speeds ranging from 12-32mbps and 3G speeds from 1.2-2.4mbps.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 13:04 1

24. darkkjedii (Posts: 21206; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)

Tmobile needs that expansion. Out here in Vegas, no matter where I've had them, coverage was subpar. AT&T has consistently been the overall best, and that ain't saying much. I'd rank them 1. AT&T 2. Verizon 3. Sprint 4. Tmobile, as I've had them all. Tmobile'snew plan structure is the wave of the future, and will spur huge growth.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 15:12 2

41. true1984 (Posts: 823; Member since: 23 May 2012)

I agree. I live in MD and Tmo is pretty terrible. Verizon is still the best out here but with Sprint I get LTE everywhere, so it's pretty good. Not too sure about AT&T though.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 14:18

34. MartyK (Posts: 816; Member since: 11 Apr 2012)

I believe in a year are less Sprint will be in the game again, once they launch their tri band service, so I think the big 2, should be very concern or lower their price.
I have both T-Mobile and Sprint..

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:37

9. 14545 (Posts: 1532; Member since: 22 Nov 2011)

In the short term, no. If Tmo adds customers and starts building a true national network to rival ATT and VZW, yes. But there's no telling what their plans are regarding new markets, and they would have to have a much greater rural market rollout for that to happen.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:41 3

10. SupermanayrB (limited) (Posts: 571; Member since: 20 Mar 2012)

Until their coverage is equal or almost close to it, then no. Less expensive doesn't mean better. Bimmers & Benzs' are still selling even though Hyundai has luxury cars for half the price of those two.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 11:59

15. PBXtech (Posts: 1032; Member since: 21 Oct 2013)

More Carly, please.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 12:01 1

16. Sprissy (Posts: 161; Member since: 11 Feb 2012)

If I lived in an area where T-Mobile actually had great service then I would consder them but until that happens I will have to stick with Verizon....with any luck T-Mobile will force Verizon to at least offer its customers a better deal then they are currently getting but honestly I don't see that happening....they out for every penny they can get...and we keep paying it for great coverage.

posted on 26 Oct 2013, 12:04 1

17. jamesedward318 (Posts: 99; Member since: 25 Dec 2010)

People are always going to look at how much they can save in terms of dollars and cents. So while the cost of living continues to soar folks will start to cut back in areas that are insanely expensive. I think T-Mobile will continue to add more and more customers and by this time next year I see them acquiring more regional carriers.

posted on 27 Oct 2013, 02:18

66. johnbftl (Posts: 281; Member since: 09 Jun 2012)

That is not true at all. There are a few things people week adamantly keep the same regardless of another provider offering a lower price, so long as it is something they are happy with. People will not change their television, home phone, high speed internet, or wireless service providers unless provoked. Those are things are affect their daily lives and customers get very upset if they change and are not happy with the new provider, this will remain with who they have if their current provider has not upset them to the point of leaving.

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