In the last quarter of 2010, T-Mobile lost 318,000 customers after reports indicating a previous loss of 60,000 customers in the precedent quarter, overcoming competitors like AT&T, Verizon and Sprint in terms of churn rates. The company is aware of the fact that it loses ground and immediate measures need to be taken: “High contract churn and significant contract customer losses in the fourth quarter of 2010 indicate that we still have a fair amount of work ahead of us and that any turnaround will take time,” said Philipp Humm, CEO of T-Mobile USA, in a statement.
Precisely one year ago, the parent company of T-Mobile USA, Deutsche Telekom, informed us of the possibility of an initial public offering as a merger with other carriers stands chance of increasing the number of subscribers. In an interview with CNET given by Humm a month ago, the CEO mentioned expanding network coverage and boosting network speed on its networks as part of their strategic plan to regain its customers and position in the market.
One possible explanation for this situation might lie in Deutsche Telekom Chief Executive Rene Obermann’s opinion that T-Mobile finds itself in this situation for three reasons: the poor image of its network, no iPhone to be found on their offer and stricter credit terms for customers.
The iPhone argument seems to be realistic considering that iPhone sellers AT&T and Verizon increased their number of subscribers while T-Mobile faced a sound decrease. Yet, T-Mobile is straining to catch up with competitors and launches the Galaxy S 4G smartphone. In the following period, T-Mobile will introduce the LG G Slate tablet as well, increasing the chances of bringing itself back on track.
Diversification is what T-Mobile’s competitors are doing in order to maintain and increase sales; two weeks ago AT&T announced it would offer a new social gaming platform on its Android phones since losing the iPhone deal. AT&T will team up with OpenFeint, a competitor to Apple’s social gaming platform, Game Center. Whereas AT&T regards mobile gaming as being the key to gaining new customers, Verizon focuses its attention on applications. Earlier we mentioned Verizon refurbishing its V Cast music app, now offering full sync with Android devices; songs can now be transferred from the Android phone to PCs and other attuned MP3 device by means of V Cast Media Manager and get socially driven recommendations based on current music purchases.