Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 10, 2013 11:50 AM
T-Mobile may be in fourth place when it comes to cell-phone carriers in the United States, but it is making a big move on April 12th in an attempt to change its position.
That's when T-Mobile will finally become an iPhone distributor, and it is asking current iPhone owners to come turn theirs in and upgrade to the new phone. The incentive to switch phone companies? For those who trade in their iPhone 4S or iPhone 4, they can get a iPhone 5 for $0 down plus monthly payments, according to a press release. If the phone is in decent shape, the consumer will get a $120 credit to apply to the payments, buy accessories with or pay off a T-Mobile bill.
Couple that with T-Mobile’s recent acquisition of MetroPCS and its announcement that it wouldn’t hold consumers to annual contracts and the company is clearly doing all it can [update: including new ads, below] to pull itself up into the ranks of Verizon, AT&T and Sprint.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 1, 2013 05:12 PM
AT&T is leveraging the popularity of its "It's not complicated" campaign by switching out children from the TV commercials that broke in November with retired basketball stars such as Larry Bird, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson and Bill Russell for March Madness.
In partnership with the NCAA and Turner Broadcasting's TBS, TNT and truTV, AT&T is showing its social media muscle, pumping out Promoted Tweets from the NCAA's @MarchMadness Twitter handle during numerous college basketball games, such as Florida Gulf Coast's two-game run to the Sweet 16 round.
"We want to provide behind-the-scenes content so people from their living rooms on their couches can be a part of the on-site game experience," said Blair Klein, social, digital and emerging communications lead at AT&T, to Adweek.
"Engaging fans around the things they are passionate about helps live our core values—connecting with customers and allowing them to engage with each other and the brand. This [Twitter-based] program reflects that, as well as the speed of conversation. It ties in with our 'fastest 4G LTE network' copy."Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 12, 2013 05:59 PM
T-Mobile has been trying to find a dancing partner for some time now. Back in 2011, it came close to finding the perfect mate when it flirted with being bought by AT&T for $39 million only to have the whole thing shot down.
But things went their way Tuesday when the U.S. Department of Justice and the FCC approved a merger between Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile and MetroPCS, making the twosome into the fourth-largest wireless carrier in the States and ready to do battle with AT&T and Verizon Wireless, Nasdaq.com reports.
Fourth largest may sound pretty big, but its 42 million subscribers are about half of what each of the Big Two have, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.Continue reading...
Posted by Barry Silverstein on November 7, 2012 01:08 PM
Japanese technology giant Softbank's $20 billion takeover of Sprint is already proving to be an uphill battle. Sprint reported that it lost 423,000 U.S. subscribers from July 1 to Sept. 30, while only gaining 19,000 non-contract subscribers, the smallest number in over three years. That churn contributed to Sprint losing $767 million in the quarter, compared to a $301 million loss for the same period a year ago.
The downward spiral for Sprint was even more obvious in comparison to its two main competitors, Verizon Wireless, which added 1.8 million subscribers, and AT&T, which added 228,000 subscribers. In addition, Verizon Wireless and AT&T saw a spike in iPhone 5 sales while Sprint's activation of iPhones in Q3 was flat. Ironically, the 2012 American Customer Satisfaction Index ranked Sprint first among all national carriers in customer satisfaction and most improved, across all 47 U.S. industries, during the last four years.
In an attempt to shore up its flagging business, Sprint is acquiring PCS broadband spectrum and customers in parts of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri and Ohio from smaller wireless competitor U.S. Cellular for $480 million. Sprint CEO Dan Hesse stated that "Acquiring this spectrum will significantly increase Sprint's network capacity and improve the customer experience in several important Midwest markets including Chicago and St. Louis." Even though U.S. Cellular is exiting the Chicago market, its brand name will remain on the city's U.S. Cellular Field stadium and it will maintain its corporate headquarters in the market.
Being acquired by Softbank means Sprint, meanwhile, will officially shed the Nextel part of its corporate name.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on November 7, 2012 10:05 AM
Deutsche Telekom's Cannes Lions-winning film project called "Move On," described as "a road movie like no other, because it is inspired by film fans from all over Europe" has made its big screen debut, premiering last night in Berlin. The branded entertainment project, which started unfolding online in May as part of its "Life is for Sharing" banner, was directed by Asger Leth and features actor Mads Mikkelsen (who starred in Casino Royale, The Three Musketeers, Monsters vs. Aliens and Clash of the Titans) on a secret mission in eight episodes, each taking place in a different European country and incorporating fans. Samsung and Volkswagen also supported the project, which you can check out at move-on-film.com.
Posted by Sheila Shayon on October 15, 2012 12:53 PM
Japanese firms, fueled by a strong yen and low interest rates, have spent $75bn this year on foreign deals with no evidence of a slowing down. Now Japanese mobile operator SoftBank has agreed to pay $20.1 billion for a 70 percent stake in Sprint, marking the company's largest overseas acquisition to date.
“This transaction provides an excellent opportunity for SoftBank to leverage its expertise in smartphones and next-generation high speed networks, including LTE, to drive the mobile internet revolution in one of the world’s largest markets," stated SoftBank's billionaire founder and chief, Masayoshi Son, in a joint press release.
"As we have proven in Japan, we have achieved a v-shaped earnings recovery in the acquired mobile business and grown dramatically by introducing differentiated products to an incumbent-led market. Our track record of innovation, combined with Sprint’s strong brand and local leadership, provides a constructive beginning toward creating a more competitive American wireless market.”Continue reading...
penny-wise, brand foolish
Posted by Mark J. Miller on April 13, 2012 05:52 PM
The economy may be getting stronger, but everybody is still looking to make a buck in any way possible. Verizon Wireless, the nation’s largest mobile provider, is no different, particularly since it had “a fourth-quarter decline in its wireless profit margins,” thanks in large part to “hefty subsidies” it had to fork over to Apple for its iPhone, according to Reuters.
Partially as a result, Verizon Wireless users will get the honor starting April 22 of paying an extra $30 when they decide to upgrade to a new phone. So consumers will pay the price of the new mobile device as well as the $30 service fee to upgrade.
Verizon, of course, would like consumers to know that they are not the only wireless company doing this. “AT&T Inc. said in January that it would tighten its upgrade policies this year to help reduce its costs for handset upgrades, but has not provided details,” Reuters reports. Perhaps this change at Verizon will now open the door for a similar effort by AT&T.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on April 2, 2012 04:57 PM
AT&T is testing a new loyalty program: AT&T Plus, billed as "your pass to more possibilities — one that delivers a personalized customer experience."
For now, it’s a trial limited to a handful of markets in the U.S. (Minneapolis, Colorado and Texas for starters), offering free access to a special 1-855-ATTPLUS customer service line, no upgrade fees, no activation fees for second phone lines, a 25% discount for non-Apple phone accessories, and a $10 Starbucks gift card.
Customer loyalty for mobile carriers is an increasing challenge. A recent survey from PwC reports that customer loyalty is continuing to decline and the average length of "postpaid customer relationships" dropped to 48 months last year from 59 months in 2010 as reported by CNET.Continue reading...