T-Mobile sells 500,000 iPhone 5s in first month, quarterly profits dropBy Dave LeClair
T-Mobile has just released its earnings report for the first quarter of 2013, offering a first look at the company's iPhone 5 sales since it began carrying the device about a month ago. The self-procalimed 'uncarrier' was able to move 500,000 iPhones in that time, which is not bad, but nowhere near the 4.8 million units sold by AT&T during the same period.
Of course, comparing iPhone sales between the two is not exactly a fair comparison, since AT&T offers an iPhone 4 free of charge, and a 4S for $99 with a new contract. T-Mobile did not release quantities sold for older model iPhones, as it is probably holding that data back for next quarter, when it actually has a full three months of carrying the complete line of devices.
Besides iPhone sales, T-Mobile added 579,000 new subscribers in the previous three month period, but only 3,000 of those were branded customers. The rest were spread among its MVNOs and other unbranded carriers using its network. Still, this was the first branded increase T-Mobile has seen since 2009.
Despite an otherwise encouraging quarter, the company still saw a big drop in profit compared to Q1 2012. Specifically, quarterly net income was $107 million, whereas last year it saw $200 million in profit during Q1.
Of course, these number are not totally indicative of where T-Mobile stands right now, as only a small part of the data includes its new no contract strategy. Next quarter will provide a much better indication of where the carrier is heading, and how the change in strategy is actually doing.