AT&T Says It Will Be 'Disruptive' With Cricket
AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson today said the company expects to close its acquisition of Leap Wireless by the end of the month, and that it will use the pre-paid carrier's brand to shake things up. "We're going to be fairly aggressive [there]," said Stephenson, to "see if we can be a little disruptive down at that end of the market." Stephenson made the remarks at the Morgan Stanley Technology, Media & Telecom Conference. He explained that though Cricket has a strong brand, potential customers often avoid it due to its limited network coverage. Once AT&T acquires Cricket, that story will change. "All of a sudden overnight, Cricket is going to have nationwide coverage," he said. AT&T didn't announce any specific plans regarding Cricket. Stephenson also noted that the AT&T Next program, which lets customers pay for their devices over time, has become very popular. By the end of December, 20% of new device sales were being financed through AT&T Next rather than subsidized with a standard two-year contract.
U.S. Carriers Share Galaxy S9 and S9+ Launch Plans and Pricing
All four major carriers in the U.S. plan to sell the Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ beginning in March.
FCC Approves Freetel Handset for Cricket
A handset made by Freetel, a Japanese company, was recently approved by the FCC for Cricket Wireless. Documents on the FCC web site detail a smartphone called the Cricket Wave, though the phone is manufactured by Freetel.
AT&T Says First 5G Device Will Be a Puck
When AT&T launches 5G service, the first device able to access it will not be a handset and will instead be a puck, according to comments made by AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson. "Getting the handsets at scale penetrated into the market will slow things down," noted Stephenson.
Sprint Planning to Use Virgin Mobile As Market 'Disrupter'
Sprint intends to relaunch its Virgin Mobile brand later this year and will use the prepaid service to shake things up. "We've put most of our attention in the postpaid handset business, which is where 80% of the profit in this industry comes from," said CEO Marcelo Claure.
If they really wanted to disrupt the low end market...
$20 or $30 then they wouldn't be forcing people to break the law (class action anyone?) and they could make more profit in one lick than they are throughout the entire year of an AIO line.