Sprint Wireless was always the “who?” of the big 4 cellular providers in the United States. Having purchased Nextel some years back helped get them to the big 4, but most people were using either AT&T or Verizon.
On Wednesday, Sprint revealed details of it’s first quarter selling the Apple iPhone. In Q1, Sprint sold over 1.8 million iPhone devices, 40% of which were new Sprint customers. Apple single handily saved Sprint from falling off the edge. Since AT&T / T-mobile merger didn’t go through, and there are no iPhones on T-mobile, it has now fallen 4th.
Despite all the new customers, Sprint, AT&T and Verizon are reporting lower “EBITA service margins”. This is a metric that carries use to measure profit. Essentially it’s the percentage of profit made on selling units. Since Apple’s price for the iPhone is so high, the profit margin is slim and for these cell providers it’s a “nightmare”. More details on the margins can be read here.
Well good for you Sprint. If you keep the Unlimited Data Plan (only 99/month for unlimited everything) and don’t cap users (like AT&T does) you probably have a good chance of becoming the number one iPhone service provider for the US. Good luck!