Without Apple’s iPhone, T-Mobile USA continues to shed customers

“Deutsche Telekom AG said Thursday it expects operating profit to drop further this year after reporting more customer losses in the U.S. and as parts of Europe remain challenging,” Philipp Grontzki reports for Dow Jones Newswires.

“It reported operating profit for 2011 of EUR18.69 billion, down from EUR19.47 billion a year earlier. ‘In 2011, the company operated in a challenging environment in every respect, a situation that is not going to change this year,’ Chief Executive Rene Obermann said in a statement,” Grontzki reports. “The net loss in the final quarter of 2011 widened to EUR1.34 billion, from a loss of EUR514 million a year earlier. The figure includes several one-time items, including a cash payment of EUR2.3 billion from AT&T Inc. as compensation for the failed sale of T-Mobile USA–as well as impairment writedowns of EUR2.3 billion and EUR800 million on the U.S. and Europe, respectively. Sales were down 3.7% in the last three months of the year.”

Grontzki reports, “T-Mobile USA lost another 802,000 contract customers on a net basis in the fourth quarter. The fourth-quarter impairment losses in the U.S. are linked to the declining customer contract base, as well as margin pressure at new contracts, Deutsch Telekom said, adding that it forecasts T-Mobile USA to generate an operating profit of about $4.8 billion this year, down from $5.33 billion in 2011. T-Mobile USA is the only national carrier not selling Apple Inc.’s iPhone, making it harder to win customers that sign contracts, and so far also the only one that isn’t building a faster fourth-generation mobile network on a technology called LTE. This will change soon, as Deutsche Telekom said Thursday it will invest an additional $1.4 billion as it now plans to launch LTE in the U.S. next year.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: iPhone, bitch.

Related article:
The iPhone is (still) saving the mobile industry: Apple’s iPhone almost singlehandedly saved AT&T and Sprint – February 22, 2012


    1. Haha I once accidentally used unsweetened baking chocolate as a chocolate covering on a cake. It tasted vile. I took a piece with some delicious looking icing, and took one bite, and choked 😛

  1. 5 years to add the iPhone & nothing yet…

    January 2007 was when it became obvious the cell phone world flipped. By Jan 2008 the planning and contacts with Apple should have been well underway. Why not?

    Why would a public corporation put their head somewhere in the dark and not acknowledge what their potential customers were already enthusiastic about?

    Losers. DT needs a new set of younger Board of Director members who understand quality user experience and change.

    1. If you hadn’t followed it for the (practically) whole of last year, T-Mobile was to be sold off to AT&T (it is even mentioned in the article). In other words, it was going to get the iPhone as soon as that sale was complete. Because the sale was essentially blocked, T-Mobile now finds itself continuing to operate independently.

      Let us not forget; even without the iPhone, and in a situation when a whole fiscal year passed in which everyone thought merger was a done deal, T-Mobile USA still operates at profit, and that is in a situation where its owner (Deutsche Telekom) doesn’t care about it and wants to get rid of it.

      With so many obstacles put in its way, it is quite remarkable that they continue to generate profits.

    2. “By Jan 2008 the planning and contacts with Apple should have been well underway. Why not?”

      Most of the industry was taking a wait and see approach to the iPhone, or better to say they were caught like deer in the headlights, paralyzed by what they couldn’t have ever imagined.

  2. The main question now is, with the merger now clearly out of the question, whether T-Mobile USA will now try to pursue Apple for the iPhone contract. Of all the four major carriers in the US, it is the most ‘mickey mouse’ one (kind of hard to say its name without laughing), but still much larger than majority of over 100 other carriers that currently have the iPhone. After all, the frequency spectrum T-Mobile uses isn’t different from all those 100+ other carriers out there.

  3. I wonder what AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint will say when Apple tells them to lower their prices, or they aren’t getting the next iPhone on their network.

    Or when Apple starts their own wireless carrier. Why not buy up the airwaves Tmobile owns?

  4. Let’s look back, in the not so distant time-travel device called Google Search… THIS quarters numbers AND last quarters LOSS OF CUSTOMERS is EXACTLY the same number (close)…. SO, if they stay on a trajectory like this, they’ll be OUT OF CUSTOMERS soon… HA!

    Given that T-Mumble has the WORST MARKETING ORGANIZATION on Earth and the WORST CMO in the history of mankind – still, maybe that’s the strategy!!! Kill it all and start over??

    These people are morons if they think Apple is going to lift a single finger to help them unless it’s to purchase their spectrum at garbage dump prices and scrap the rest…


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