According to Business Wire, T-Mobile USA lost 471,000 customers in the first quarter of 2011. They also gained 192,000 in the same quarter. So although it’s not quite as bad as it sounds, a net loss of 279,000 is fairly bad news. This turnover is called “contract churn” in the industry. If a carrier’s “churn” nets zero then they’re generally doing okay. If they are losing customers faster than gaining new ones, that’s a problem.
The reason for the decline in numbers? T-Mobile cited increased competition (something sure to help AT&T’s with various governmental entities) as the primary factor. It wasn’t until near the end of the quarter (March 20th) that two parties formally agreed to the purchase of T-Mobile by AT&T — but rumors of T-Mobile selling out or merging with another U.S. carrier had been flying for months before the AT&T talks were final.
That kind of discussion doesn’t bode well with long-term customers, like myself, and certainly played a part in the “contract churn”. What will be significantly telling will be Q2 2011’s numbers, which will include not only those who are simply leaving T-Mobile, but will also include those those who don’t want to go to AT&T.
What about you?
Are you an AT&T customer? Do you welcome all your new T-Mobile neighbors? Do you think T-Mobile’s network will help increase your data speeds and increase its reach? Do you think adding all those new customers will simply slow down AT&T’s network even more?
Are you a T-Mobile customer? Do you plan on riding out the AT&T acquisition, or are you going to jump-ship to another carrier before that happens? What’s your biggest concern with the change-over?
Let us know in the comments!
Source: Business Wire