Apple's iPhone accounts for 77% of AT&T's 6.1M smartphone activations

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
AT&T announced on Wednesday that it activated 4.7 million iPhones in the third quarter of 2012, once again giving Apple the lion's share of smartphone activations on the carrier.

With 6.1 million total smartphones activated in the quarter, Apple's iPhone accounted for more than 77 percent of AT&T's smartphones. Though Apple remained dominant, AT&T noted that sales for Android and Windows smartphones also reached record levels.

AT&T


Of the 4.7 million iPhones activated on AT&T, 18 percent of those were new to the carrier. The carrier also noted that its postpaid results were affected by iPhone 5 inventory constraints, though AT&T's press materials did not indicate exactly how many iPhone 5 units were sold at launch.

Constraints on iPhone 5 inventory resulted in the "vast majority" of iPhone sales in the quarter going to existing customers. AT&T noted there was "considerable pent-up demand" for the iPhone 5, and that Apple's latest handset set a sales record during the first few days of the preorder period.

Last week, AT&T's chief competitor Verizon revealed that it sold 3.1 million iPhones in the third quarter, and that 650,000 of them were iPhone 5 units. Verizon sold a total of 6.8 million smartphones in the quarter, while Android devices accounted for 3.4 million smartphone activations.

Apple's share of the smartphone pie at AT&T is considerably higher because AT&T was Apple's exclusive iPhone carrier partner for years before Verizon, and later Sprint, joined the fold.



Overall, AT&T saw 63 cents diluted earnings per share, compared to 61 cents in the same period a year ago. It also saw record cash from operations of $11.5 billion, and free cash flow of $6.5 billion.

"We had another impressive quarter with strong earnings growth, record cash flows and solid returns to shareholders through dividends and share buybacks," said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and chief executive officer. "In wireless, we had another excellent smartphone quarter, penetration of usage-based mobile data plans continues to climb, and our 4G LTE network build is ahead of schedule. And in wireline, our IP network continues to deliver strong gains in U-verse high speed Internet connections, which helped drive an almost 10 percent increase in broadband data ARPU."

AT&T's earnings come a day before Apple is set to report its own quarterly results. Apple's September quarter will include the first week of iPhone 5 sales.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 24
    Well...should we really try to figure out whether Android is winning at AT&T?
  • Reply 2 of 24


    so iPhone accounts for over 60% of smartphone sales when combining Verizon and AT&T.

  • Reply 3 of 24
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    so iPhone accounts for over 60% of smartphone sales when combining Verizon and AT&T.
    Wonder what Sprint's numbers will be. Apple's stock is up slightly pre-market so I'm assuming wall street liked this AT&T number.
  • Reply 4 of 24


    "There are 23% of the people who will buy the other stuff no matter what. ..... And they will buy Android cr4p no matter what."

  • Reply 5 of 24


    Why does Verizon give a sold number and AT&T an activated number?

  • Reply 6 of 24
    christophbchristophb Posts: 1,419member
    I wonder how many of those activations were hand-me-down iPhone 4s and 4Ss.
  • Reply 7 of 24

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by thataveragejoe View Post


    Why does Verizon give a sold number and AT&T an activated number?



    I am totally confused here. On one hand some people say that android sales have topped iPone sales by far, and then comes AT&T and says 77% of their activations are iPhones. Do all these overwhelming majorities of android users have smartphones without a mobile provider? Are they using WiFi only communication? 

  • Reply 8 of 24
    al_bundyal_bundy Posts: 1,525member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rabbit_Coach View Post


    I am totally confused here. On one hand some people say that android sales have topped iPone sales by far, and then comes AT&T and says 77% of their activations are iPhones. Do all these overwhelming majorities of android users have smartphones without a mobile provider? Are they using WiFi only communication? 



    android wins in other countries where you have to buy the phone outright, full price. lots of cheap android phones in the $200 range. in the US with family plans you have to be stupid to pay full price for a phone if you're on a family plan

  • Reply 9 of 24


    Originally Posted by ChristophB View Post

    I wonder how many of those activations were hand-me-down iPhone 4s and 4Ss.


     


    Do you have any reason to believe that Apple double-dips activations?

  • Reply 10 of 24

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by al_bundy View Post


    android wins in other countries where you have to buy the phone outright, full price. lots of cheap android phones in the $200 range. in the US with family plans you have to be stupid to pay full price for a phone if you're on a family plan



    Sorry I didn't make myself clear. I was talking about the US market. In other countries with lower income, it's definitely android who is leading in marketshare because heaps of cheap products.

  • Reply 11 of 24
    lilgto64lilgto64 Posts: 1,147member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


     


    Do you have any reason to believe that Apple double-dips activations?



     


    Hmm - what about exchanges and warranty replacement? How many folks got three or four iPhone 4S units because the color balance was slightly different than the iPhone 4? and do each of those count as an activation because it is a net new serial number - or are they only counting how many separate phone lines were added? Would be interesting - although likely also confusing - to see all the raw data. 


     
  • Reply 12 of 24


    Originally Posted by lilgto64 View Post

    How many folks got three or four iPhone 4S units because the color balance was slightly different than the iPhone 4?

     



     


    You mean the people that refused to wait until the glue was dry? image


     


    I'd hope that if those were activated before return that their numbers be wiped from activation once they hit the internal system again.

  • Reply 13 of 24
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,957member
    Do you have any reason to believe that Apple double-dips activations?

    How about all those millions of handed down iPhones? How many children or significant other were upgraded from a feature phone or Android and are now another activated iPhone.
  • Reply 14 of 24
    Do you have any reason to believe that Apple double-dips activations?

    Nope, not implying that. AT&T reported activations of iPhones. I had two 4Ss that went to friends that were not iPhoners and they deactivated older Samsung Galaxy devices. I'm just curious about the breakdown of the numbers i.e. new iPhone 5, new iPhone 4S, activation of passed down iPhones to existing AT&T customers and passed down iPhones to new AT&T customers.

    Edit: And I'm certain we'll never see deactivation numbers by handset from any carrier or manufacturer.
  • Reply 15 of 24
    al_bundyal_bundy Posts: 1,525member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post





    How about all those millions of handed down iPhones? How many children or significant other were upgraded from a feature phone or Android and are now another activated iPhone.


    no need for that now that iphone is free on contract

  • Reply 16 of 24
    al_bundyal_bundy Posts: 1,525member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rabbit_Coach View Post


    Sorry I didn't make myself clear. I was talking about the US market. In other countries with lower income, it's definitely android who is leading in marketshare because heaps of cheap products.



    i read somewhere that the android market share is only so high because of developing countries. in the US iphone share is higher than android share.

  • Reply 17 of 24
    Deleted. Meant to edit, not reply.
  • Reply 18 of 24
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,957member
    al_bundy wrote: »
    no need for that now that iphone is free on contract

    What if the person is mid contract?
  • Reply 19 of 24
    al_bundy wrote: »
    no need for that now that iphone is free on contract

    I passed my spares to Android users so they could activate w/o having to be burdened with new contracts. If they didn't like the iPhone experience they wouldn't be burdened with a two year commitment. No complaints so far. In fact, lots of praise for how solid the OS is.
  • Reply 20 of 24
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,957member
    christophb wrote: »
    I passed my spares to Android users so they could activate w/o having to be burdened with new contracts. If they didn't like the iPhone experience they wouldn't be burdened with a two year commitment. No complaints so far. In fact, lots of praise for how solid the OS is.

    How many spares did you have?
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