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Legere: T-Mobile is now the third largest carrier, surpassing Sprint
Part of the “Big Four” US carriers, T-Mobile has long occupied last place in this race, but no longer — at least if John Legere’s latest statement is accurate. During T-Mobile US’s earning calls, Legere says that T-Mobile has grown to a point where it has now surpassed Sprint, taking third place in the race towards the top.
So how many subscribers does T-Mobile have? Before merging with MetroPCS, T-Mobile had 33 million subscribers, and after they jumped up to 42 million. Since then they’ve added 13 million more, coming to a grand total of 55. In contrast, Sprint went in to 2013 with 55 million customers, 2014 with 55 million, and 2015 with the same 55 million. Wait.. but isn’t that a tie? Technically yes, though Legere claims that Sprint has used some questionable moves like including inactive MVNO customers in order to bolster its numbers. Of course, we imagine that T-Mobile is also doing its best to skew the numbers in its favor. Legere does mention that “by a quarter or two” the gap should be noticeably larger.
Until an outside analyst or two takes a closer look, I’d take T-Mobile’s statement with a slight grain of salt and say it is more accurate that T-Mobile has, at least, caught up to the Now Network. Still, 13 million new subscribers is nothing to sneeze at. It is clear that T-Mobile’s uncarrier effort has sat well with mobile customers in the US, and T-Mobile doesn’t look to be slowing down anytime soon.
For what it is worth though, building up this reputation has cost T-Mobile and its parent company Deutsche Telekom a considerable amount of coin and continues to be a major expense for the company. And so it remains unseen whether T-Mobile can continue with this level of momentum long term. What do you think of T-Mobile’s progress so far? Do you think the uncarrier can find long-term fiscal success? Let us know what you think in the comments.