AT&T to lean on 'iPhone 7' promotions to temper subscriber decline, analyst says

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 2016
AT&T is looking to iPhone to protect its postpaid mobile subscriber base from incursions made by carriers and "Un-carriers" alike, a strategy expected to result in attractive "iPhone 7" promotions later this year, according to investment bank Nomura Securities.




With traditionally thin margins on handset sales, a strong "iPhone 7" launch is unlikely to be a significant revenue driver for AT&T, but it could put a positive spin on postpaid customer stability in the fourth quarter, Nomura analyst Jeffrey Kvaal said in a note shared with AppleInsider. AT&T is looking to alleviate declining net subscriber additions after 363,000 postpaid subscribers left the network in quarter one (PDF link).

Along with DirecTV and Sunday Ticket, AT&T will promote the expected next-generation iPhone in an effort to "defend a slightly lower tier slice of its mobile sub base," Kvaal said.

Nomura forecasts AT&T iPhone upgrades to hit 7 to 8 percent in the second half of 2016, up from 5 percent in three month period ending in March. About 72 percent of AT&T's postpaid customers are on the company's Mobile Share Value plans, which require a steady diet of upgrades. Kvaal's predictions for "iPhone 7" fall about 3 percent short of gains realized with 2014's iPhone 6 release, which pushed AT&T upgrade levels above 10 percent.

The wireless carrier's second half push is expected to net about 1.01 million postpaid additions, delivering stability after a string of quarters that saw it lose more ports to T-Mobile than it secured. During the third quarter of last year, AT&T gained one T-Mobile customer for every two it lost.

T-Mobile has given all three of its rivals a run when it comes to selling Apple products and services. Last December, the self-styled "Un-carrier" offered existing AT&T customers 128GB iPhone 6s handsets for the price of the 16GB model as an incentive to switch over. Before that, it announced that customers who bought iPhone 6 could immediately upgrade to the iPhone 6s when it released a few months later.

Apple is expected to follow its usual launch cycle and release a refreshed iPhone this fall. Current rumors suggest the next-gen handset will come with enhanced cameras -- a dual-lens setup for the 5.5-inch Plus model -- and other updated internals, but should otherwise be aesthetically similar to iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s. The most recent rumblings claim Apple plans to offer a new 256GB storage tier, twice that of current top-end models.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 37
    charles1charles1 Posts: 36member
    I've been with AT&T years before the iPhone, and I bought an original iPhone the week it was released. They keep raising their prices for the same (or less) service. If AT&T doesn't lower their prices and become more competitive, my new iPhone 6s will be my last AT&T phone. I'd even be willing to give up my original iPhone grandfathered unlimited data plan.
    redgeminipacornchip
  • Reply 2 of 37
    tzterritzterri Posts: 96member
    Been with AT&T since the first iPhone. Buying my next iPhone from Apple so that it's unlocked. Much cheaper service from others around here.
    jfc1138
  • Reply 3 of 37
    sricesrice Posts: 114member
    tzterri said:
    Been with AT&T since the first iPhone. Buying my next iPhone from Apple so that it's unlocked. Much cheaper service from others around here.
    Call them and tell them you are leaving for a lower cost provider. I did that and I'm paying just slightly higher than t-mob would charge.  About $160 for four lines. 
    edited June 2016 caliSpamSandwich
  • Reply 4 of 37
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    Everyone seems to be betting on iPhone 7. What do they know that we don't?

    Could just be Apple's great track record with "tick" iPhones.
    cornchip
  • Reply 5 of 37
    snovasnova Posts: 1,281member
    charles1 said:
    I've been with AT&T years before the iPhone, and I bought an original iPhone the week it was released. They keep raising their prices for the same (or less) service. If AT&T doesn't lower their prices and become more competitive, my new iPhone 6s will be my last AT&T phone. I'd even be willing to give up my original iPhone grandfathered unlimited data plan.
    Been AT&T customer for 12 years until last month.  Completely agree with you.  Its interesting to see that I am not the only one who had enough and has left.  AT&T has no one to blame but their own greed. 
    LPmagooredgeminipalatifbpcornchip
  • Reply 6 of 37
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member
    As someone who upgrades every year AT&T no longer makes any sense. Going straight to Apple for their program this Fall. 
    edited June 2016 LPmagoolatifbppatchythepiratelostkiwi
  • Reply 7 of 37
    snovasnova Posts: 1,281member
    srice said:
    tzterri said:
    Been with AT&T since the first iPhone. Buying my next iPhone from Apple so that it's unlocked. Much cheaper service from others around here.
    Call them and tell them you are leaving for a lower cost provider. I did that and I'm paying just slightly higher than t-mob would charge.  About $160 for four lines. 
    I'm paying $100 (including all taxes and fees and no extra fees due to overages possible) for 5 lines, still on AT&T towers via MVNO but not paying AT&T anymore.    $160 is AT&T normal charge for 4 lines.    $100 for the 15G shared plus $15 a line... plus taxes and fees and fees of fees.
    edited June 2016
  • Reply 8 of 37
    mac_128mac_128 Posts: 3,363member
    If Apple really drops the headphone jack and doesn't offer much more than the 6s in features and style then good luck. Maybe ATT will offer free Lightning headphones or wireless Apple ear buds, and a free adapter, with purchase.
  • Reply 9 of 37
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,959member
    ATT can kiss my ass good bye for my 2 accounts in the next few days! 
    latifbp
  • Reply 10 of 37
    fallenjtfallenjt Posts: 3,959member
    snova said:
    charles1 said:
    I've been with AT&T years before the iPhone, and I bought an original iPhone the week it was released. They keep raising their prices for the same (or less) service. If AT&T doesn't lower their prices and become more competitive, my new iPhone 6s will be my last AT&T phone. I'd even be willing to give up my original iPhone grandfathered unlimited data plan.
    Been AT&T customer for 12 years until last month.  Completely agree with you.  Its interesting to see that I am not the only one who had enough and has left.  AT&T has no one to blame but their own greed. 
    Me too 15 years here and fck ATT good bye in a dew days after paying off my 6+ on Next
  • Reply 11 of 37
    LPmagooLPmagoo Posts: 5member
    AT&T is nothing but a huge bubbling virus!!
    latifbp
  • Reply 12 of 37
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,505member
    snova said:
    srice said:
    tzterri said:
    Been with AT&T since the first iPhone. Buying my next iPhone from Apple so that it's unlocked. Much cheaper service from others around here.
    Call them and tell them you are leaving for a lower cost provider. I did that and I'm paying just slightly higher than t-mob would charge.  About $160 for four lines. 
    I'm paying $100 (including all taxes and fees and no extra fees due to overages possible) for 5 lines, still on AT&T towers via MVNO but not paying AT&T anymore.    $160 is AT&T normal charge for 4 lines.    $100 for the 15G shared plus $15 a line... plus taxes and fees and fees of fees.
    More info please ... What MVNO?  How's the service compared to ATT?  Any tie-in deals with a TV provider ala ATT Uverse?

  • Reply 13 of 37
    stanthemanstantheman Posts: 318member
    AT&T owns discount operator Cricket, and Cricket customers use AT&T towers -- but Cricket's monthly charge is significantly lower. After reaching your monthly data limit, Cricket throttles download speeds. But if you don't go over that limit, the service is identical to AT&T.
    latifbpP-DogNCcali
  • Reply 14 of 37
    dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 12,505member

    Mmm ...

    STILL OUT
    Cricket Wireless hit with extended service outage across the U.S.

    Cricket Wireless is currently experiencing a major outage across the United States, leaving customers unable to use the prepaid carrier's service. As noted by ZDNet, the outage appears to have started for some as early as 1:00 p.m. PDT on Friday, June 3, and continues as of this writing.


    http://www.imore.com/cricket-wireless-hit-extended-service-outage-across-us


  • Reply 15 of 37
    P-DogNCP-DogNC Posts: 24member
    snova said:
    srice said:
    Call them and tell them you are leaving for a lower cost provider. I did that and I'm paying just slightly higher than t-mob would charge.  About $160 for four lines. 
    I'm paying $100 (including all taxes and fees and no extra fees due to overages possible) for 5 lines, still on AT&T towers via MVNO but not paying AT&T anymore.    $160 is AT&T normal charge for 4 lines.    $100 for the 15G shared plus $15 a line... plus taxes and fees and fees of fees.
    Whom are you paying for such a good price and how much data do you get?
  • Reply 16 of 37
    robin huberrobin huber Posts: 3,224member
    ATT has me by the balls with its grandfathered unlimited data. Thinking hard about going with Apple's upgrade-every-year program. I've always paid upfront for phones, so this will be a big change. But ATT will remain my carrier as long as it's all you can eat. For a family of three all on the plan, that's a deal-maker. 
  • Reply 17 of 37
    theothergeofftheothergeoff Posts: 2,076member
    is There a car that requires you to drive on their roads and fill up at their gas stations (other than tesla?).

    In all, one has to remember, that you used to buy a network and then select your phone... now you buy a iPhone and then you select your network.

    Carriers are just big dumb commodity bit pipes.  To differentiate, there has to be quality in coverage, quality in speed, and/or quality in price.  ATT, is still trying to sell the razor, and but it needs to start improving (lowering the cost) of the razor blades!!!!!

    It won't be long where with e-SIM capabilities, an iPhone should be able to be month to month (or even GB to GB)  on any network, and you should be able to ApplePay for the service on your phone as you see fit.

    full disclosure:  I'm a 8 year ATT user, since my 3G.  Was Sprint before that.  ATT has been 'okay' with me, recently, bumping my GB up to 15 from 10 at no charge.  However,  It's still pricy (and this month due to local Cable outages and my work requiring tethering, I overaged (2x)  Ouch.)

  • Reply 18 of 37
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,972member
    AT&T owns discount operator Cricket, and Cricket customers use AT&T towers -- but Cricket's monthly charge is significantly lower. After reaching your monthly data limit, Cricket throttles download speeds. But if you don't go over that limit, the service is identical to AT&T.
    The service isn't identical. You're a second class citizen and get low priority on the cell sites. 
  • Reply 19 of 37
    metrixmetrix Posts: 239member
    srice said:
    tzterri said:
    Been with AT&T since the first iPhone. Buying my next iPhone from Apple so that it's unlocked. Much cheaper service from others around here.
    Call them and tell them you are leaving for a lower cost provider. I did that and I'm paying just slightly higher than t-mob would charge.  About $160 for four lines. 
    AT&T was such a hassle to leave with iPhone. I went in to their store to unlock my iPhone that was now completely paid for and they said I could only do that online and it make take up to two weeks. I said "you have to be kidding me right". When I talked to a few other patrons that were looking at iPhones I told them my story and the store manager promptly told me he would call the police on me. I didn't believe him but the police showed up and the officer took my side but said they have the right to refuse business and could force me out of their building. I will NEVER do business with AT&T again.
    edited June 2016 LPmagoopalomine
  • Reply 20 of 37
    radster360radster360 Posts: 539member
    jfc1138 said:
    As someone who upgrades every year AT&T no longer makes any sense. Going straight to Apple for their program this Fall. 
    Still on AT&T, but bought the phone using Apple's Upgrade Plan for 2 of our family phones. As soon as the other 2 phones are off the AT&T plan, will be shifted the last phones to Apple Uograde plan. This will make us free of AT&T expensive  shankles and then we can move to other providers. I too had been Apple customer since the first IPhone and unlimited data plan, but with more people in my family wanting the phones I had to let go of that unlimited plan - was disappointed that AT&T didn't let me keep my plan. I am done with AT&T soon.
    cornchip
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