Legere: T-Mobile's message responsible for surge in customers, not the Apple iPhone

Legere: T-Mobile's message responsible for surge in customers, not the Apple iPhone
T-Mobile added 1.1 million net new customers in the second quarter, which many pundits credited to the availability of the Apple iPhone for the carrier's customers, for the first time. A report released early last month credited Apple's iconic smartphone with keeping 400,000 T-Mobile customers from leaving the nation's fourth largest carrier. But if you ask T-Mobile CEO John Legere, he will tell you that it wasn't the iPhone at all that turned the mobile operator around.

Legere says that it was T-Mobile's message, of being the "Un-carrier" that brought customers to the carrier, and kept the ones that were already there from leaving. T-Mobile stopped subsidizing the cost of new phones with higher wireless costs. T-Mobile also started its JUMP plan for those who want to upgrade their phones more often. So far 700,000 customers have signed up for the program, which was eventually copied by Verizon and AT&T.

Yes, things are looking up for T-Mobile, led by the outspoken Legere who has become a media darling starting with his comments calling AT&T's network "crap" during CES. "The postpaid phone net adds for T-Mobile exceeded those of AT&T, Sprint and Verizon (added) together," the CEO recently said. "To me, that’s one of the strongest statements you can make about a quarter." In addition, for every two T-Mobile customers leaving, the operator is bringing in three new customers from AT&T and Sprint.

Last quarter, iPhone sales represented only 21% of T-Mobile's smartphone sales, a number Legere calls "healthy." Although the CEO doesn't credit the iPhone for the carrier's surge in the second quarter, Legere still expects to do plenty of business with Apple in the future.

source: AllThingsD via AppleInsider



1. g2a5b0e unregistered

Mxyzptlk: No, the iPhone is solely responsible. The true answer more than likely lies somewhere in between the two.

5. Googler

Posts: 813; Member since: Jun 10, 2013

It is probably a combination of things, of which the iPhone is only a part of. For me, their new unlimited data plan was a no brainer.

6. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

Prior to adding the iPhone, T-Mo was hemorrhaging customers. After adding the iPhone plus making non-trivial additions to their LTE footprint, T-Mo starts increasing its customer count. As you posted, the truth is somewhere in between. I think the iPhone was a significant factor, but not the only factor. I don\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'t buy the claim that the \\\\\\\'message\\\\\\\' was the reason for the improvement, however.

7. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

What is with all of the slashes? I couldn\'t remove them with the edit function, and now the edit time limit has lapsed. PA, you need to do better QA/QC on your software releases. :-(

17. andynaija

Posts: 1263; Member since: Sep 08, 2012

What I want is that dislike button to show up again. I really miss it :(

20. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

I suspect the dislike button is gone for good - it tended to cause the flame wars to run longer than they should have and the nastiness could get out of hand.

2. stealthd unregistered

All the \"un-carrier\" thing did was switch from \"contract\" to \"financing\". I would think getting a phone/platform they were missing would have more to do with holding onto customers than changing the semantics of their service. They certainly didn\'t improve their network, that would have saved a lot more customers.

3. g2a5b0e unregistered

I guess adding 116 LTE markets doesn't count as improving their network.

4. nguaca

Posts: 11; Member since: Sep 05, 2013

adding 116 LTE markets doesn't mean it will have more coverage!!!

11. PapaSmurf

Posts: 10457; Member since: May 14, 2012

Adding 116 LTE Markets counts as IMPROVING their network not EXPANDING, all in 4 months.

14. Shatter

Posts: 2036; Member since: May 29, 2013

So they have a little over 1/4th atts LTE network but they did that in 4 months from scratch. Impressive.

13. OnTheOtherHand

Posts: 7; Member since: Jun 28, 2013

\"All the \"un-carrier\" ting did was switch from \"contract\" to \"finaincing\". As opposed to the other carriers who include the subsidized cost of phones in your rate plan, whether you upgrade or not. A least with T-Mobile, you don\'t pay for a new phone if you don\'t get a new phone.

8. bittertruth247

Posts: 36; Member since: May 03, 2013

Actually, T-Mobile owes their surge in sales to AT&T\'s failed bid to acquire them because of the stipulation that if AT&T couldn\'t buy them, T-Mobile would make $2 to $3 billion dollars which allowed T-Mobile to update their garbage network so in when the CEO called AT&T\'s next program \"crap\", he should have thanked AT&T for making T-Mobile\'s \"crap\" network better! Apple played a part in it but in no way made T-Mobile\'s network grow!

18. andynaija

Posts: 1263; Member since: Sep 08, 2012

He wasn\'t calling AT&T Next program crap, he was talking about their network.

9. no_i_dont_think_so

Posts: 9; Member since: Jan 14, 2013

It was definitely the no contract and the cheaper prices that made our family decision to switch to Tmo. iPhones? What are those?

10. nghtwng68

Posts: 108; Member since: Nov 26, 2009

Agreed! The no contract, lower prices and unlocked phones were HUGE switching factors for me, while the iPhone did play a small percentage in retaining and bringing in customers. Overall, Tmobile heard the customers plight and responded right on point. Don't regret leaving at&t at all.

15. alouden unregistered

The price, no-contract plans and promise of a rapidly-improving network were what sold me. The iPhone? Never owned one. The truth is that it's probably a combination of the revamped plans and the availability of the more popular phones. Overall, if the network is bad, it will not matter if t mobile has the latest phones.

16. ardent1

Posts: 2000; Member since: Apr 16, 2011

I hate to say it but T-mobile has a really stupid business model. Why use t-mobile when you can use MetroPCS and save $ each month. It's the same network, same phones, but it's cheaper at MetroPCS. Go figure.

19. andynaija

Posts: 1263; Member since: Sep 08, 2012

What you\'re saying doesn\'t make any sense because: 1. (pre-aquisition) There were some people that didn\'t want a contract plan. So MetroPCS was a go. 2. They are not the same network (completely) 3. T-mobile has better phones than MetroPCS. MetroPCS\'s phone lineup actually started getting better because of T-mobiles aquisition recently. 4. It depends on what you wnat/have. Not everybody has the same type of pockets. So I don\'t think they have a stupid buisness model especially if they\'re gaining customers.

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