EVO 4G Helps Boost Sprint to First Subscriber Gain in Three Years



Let me paint you a picture: For the past three years, quarter over quarter, more people have been deactivating their Sprint phones and cutting ties with the carrier than have been new subscribers signing up. Yes, for three years Sprint has slowly been losing its customer base as they have strained for relevancy in a rapidly expanding mobile market.

Now picture this: the HTC EVO 4G, the first phone to use the nation’s first 4G network, drops on Sprint towards the end of the second quarter of 2010, and just like that Sprint’s number of new subscribers is greater than the number of those saying farewell to the carrier for the first time in three years. Greater to the tune of 111,000 net subscribers gained. Goes to show what sort of impact great, feature-rich products can have.


They still lost a great deal of subscribers at 763,000, and didn’t quite post profits for Q2. They gained $8 billion in revenue but ended up with net losses of $760 million. These numbers hardly hold a candle to the Q2 figures Verizon recently reported, but it’s a move in a positive direction for a carrier that could have almost been called down for the count.

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  1. Sprint, not a bad carrier, just not better than anyone else.

    Now that they are starting to move toward a better phone base. Sprint might start to become a better carrier. I don’t think that the EVO being 4G is what brought people to Sprint so much as it is finally a phone worth buying, or hopping networks for. Which Sprint is notorious for not having.

  2. Sprint, not a bad carrier, just a terrible carrier with crappy customer service.

  3. Come on sprint! Become a Phoenix and rise from the ashes! Also, don’t release any crappy phones, it will just hurt you in the long run.

  4. I hopped from ATT for my Evo (with my wife).

    The phone itself was appealing to me. And the contract value pushed me to finally jump ship.

    ATT was just too expensive, and I didn’t even have data or texting. Their lack of options outside of the iPhone was discouraging, and their lockdown and nerfing of devices like the Cliq was another strike.
    Verizon, just as expensive as ATT.
    T-Mobile, has coverage issues in my area (basically outside of any major metro areas).

    So Sprint was an easy choice for me. And the closest competition Android wise for the EVO at the time was the original Droid.

    If they can roll out the 2.2 update for the EVO as fast as Verizon is, and keep the notable phones coming like the EPIC 4G they’ll grow their business.

  5. @Josh

    Sprint is so terrible and has so crappy in customer service that it is still *way* better than AT&T and T-Mo in recent polls.

    Go figure.

  6. Sprint is an awesome carrier when compared to the customer service at AT&T. I wasn’t with Sprint in the past, only been with them for close to a year now, but so far they have been the best carrier I’ve ever had and have had zero issues with their customer service. They’ve obviously made great attempts at fixing their problems from the horror stories I’ve heard. All I can say it that they have hands down the best data experience and best data plans of any carrier in my area.

  7. I would agree its not the 4G but simply a bad ass phone worth getting.

  8. Oh and for the record everytime I have called customer service they have been prompt and very nice.

    I bet most people who still complain about their CS probably don’t even have Sprint anymore.

  9. I can’t wait for the Samsung Epic myself. That phone is indeed another bad ass addition to their lineup.

  10. if i cant get my hands on a EVO in a month. im getting the EPIC. that screen is beautiful. i saw the t mobil version yesterday and i cant look at my phone screen the same. almost disappointed

  11. it’s no surprise that sprint has been losing customers over the past few years… i was one that left sprint. their customer service what horrible, the worst i have ever experienced in the mobile industry. also, my bill was never what i agreed on my contract, and i didn’t have any extra subscriptions, or any downloads. i even got charged over $50 for data over usage, when i had the unlimited data plan. i called them up and they told me they weren’t going to do anything, and that i had to pay it. i even got rid of my data phone, and the data plan, and never seen a change in my bill, cause when i got rid of my data plan, they added a “NEW” charge… they started charging me extra to have a spending limit, which i had no choice to except or deny. as far as the phone service goes, they had the most reliable networks i’ve ever been on. it’s their customer service, and their ability to screw their customers over that has been causing them to lose their customers. sure, the EVO 4G may have helped them gain more customers since it’s launch, new phones will only go so far. if they don’t change their customer service, if they keep charging all these hidden fees, and keep screwing their customers over, then they will go back to losing their customers. The evo is a great phone, however it’s not the only monster phone on the market! other carriers are getting their superphones on shelves, and the EVO 4G will soon be overshadowed.

  12. @nemesys06. I’m sorry to hear about your problems, but, you can find individuals who can outline terrible issues with any of the major carriers. I have been with Sprint for many years and have never had a problem with customer service, of course I have not had many reasons to contact customer service. I have only once had a problem being charged incorrectly and one phone call took care of that. I have heard many more positive comments than negative ones. The only time I have had a problem is for activation, it used to be that if you called early morning or late evening you got an off-shore call center with people who don’t really know what they are doing and activations did not go through. Apparently, Sprint responded to complaints and has brought all call centers back to the U.S. I think they are still understaffed, which they have to address with the new Epic coming out so it isn’t a nightmare like when the Evo came out.

  13. Hopefully now with the advent of phones like the EVO and Epic we will see Sprint start to focus more on sweet-ass phones. They’ve already got the best plans, hands down. They just need to give people a reason to use those plans.

  14. speaking of the EPIC, sprint sent me a little promo e-mail sending me to their promo site for the EPIC.

  15. LOVE sprint, I have the hero but wished i got the EVO it IS the BADDEST phone around its only competitor is DROID X (not crappy “have to hold it a certain way” iphone) and maybe the incredible. I’ll tell u my parent had sprint 4 yrs ago and they HATED it so much the went to metro LOL. But now we got family anymobile anytime, they couldnt believe it was the same company! The customer service (for us) has been terrific any mistake are handled immediately, the coverge and data connections are seeming illimitable.
    Bravo to sprint if everyone gets the service im getting sprint WILL surpass verizon within the next 3 yrs

  16. Sprint has more to offer than any other carrier in the US, but they don’t seem to know it. Now that they are getting a few good phones, they should be marketing like no other. If I were them, I would get into the coverage wars with ATT and VZW. Sure VZW has slightly better coverage, but ATT sure as hell doesn’t and with VZW you are paying a lot more. Where VZW has better coverage that Sprint doesn’t is very minimal, but EVERYONE pays a bill. They should hire some of the marketing people from Apple, VZW, and a few others no matter what the cost is. Turning their name around should be at the top of their to do list.

  17. Sprint is the equivalent to Hyundai, got the bad rep many years ago and now everyone still now holds on to that rep. now the majority of people who left sprint and came back says they have no issues and new customers seem to be happy with it. so all you Verizon, AT&T customers customers who think you’re paying that rediculous price for great service you can keep that. I can tell you everythings great over here in San Diego.

  18. Come on, you can’t attribute this to the EVO! Look at the numbers, and when they started being in the +. It was third quarter of 2009. That was when the Hero, Moment, and Pre were released. The EVO is just keeping the numbers up. Stop trying to label the EVO as a ‘game changer’. Yes, it is a better device than most, but game changer it is not. Sprint’s rate plans and early termination fees are the only thing that kept me from going right back to T-Mobile for the Nexus One. If only I had waited 2 more months, I would have a Nexy.

  19. Yeah, It doesn’t appear the EVO has anything to do with the recent uptick in subscribers (as per the graph.) No doubt it’s a great phone, but it’s a bit much to claim it saved Sprint.

  20. Sprint is a decent service with terrible customer service. I left them because they refused to exchange my dead phone 2 days before my contract was up (even if I was willing to sign a new contract). As I walked out of the store I told the manager I was heading right over to the Verizon store and get a new phone and he basically told me don’t let the door hit you on the way out. I will never use them again 4G network or not.

  21. @Matt i agree. ive had sprint for over 11 years. the customer service has had its ups and downs. but yesterday i had to call customer service(due to the fact that my prels touchscreen cracked and is totally useless) to swap to my previous phone a treo 700wx. i need a phone but am waiting for the epic. i dialed *2 went straight to a live person and they swapped my phone. i just think most ppl who had sprint before were burnt bad and have that grudge. but it is alot better then before.

  22. I’d been with Sprint since 2001 and was satisfied with their service and phones. Switched to Verizon in January only to regret it…poor service where I live and work and it was significantly more expensive.

    Switched back to Sprint within that 30 day limit, hooked up my old Treo and waited patiently until June 4 for the EVO. Got my wife the Hero, EVO was too big for her… and we’re a happy Sprint family with a great plan and service. It’ll be nice when they release more great Android phones and keep the ball rolling.

  23. Looks more like ANDROID in general saved Sprint. If I am not mistaken, the time that they went into the positive numbers mark is the same time that they announced their Android line-up. Sort of like what Mike D said…but I am saying that the Android platform and not any phone brought Sprint back from the dead.

  24. @JOSH You’re just one of those shit talkers who probably heard it was sucked from somebody else, but don’t know your ass from a hole in the ground… What is it that your CS does that’s so great??? Sprint has never in the 10 years i’ve had them ever sucked at CS and I’ve had Cingular and Verizon… Both majorly sucked… So shut the fuck up.

  25. I just switched to Sprint from VZW… and have had 0 issues. With the switch and the way VZW acted, I would be very hesitant to go back to VZW. I am paying less for 2 smart phones than i was for 2 stupid flip phones on VZW.. with a better plan on sprint.

    I went in to VZW in Feb to see why my contract was up… they told me 3/17/2010….I asked if it was my upgrade date and they and told me no.. i would be out of contract then if i wanted to leave or renew…Then I get the Evo on release day.. this month I got an ETF… they wont budge on it.. but said..”If i come back they will remove the fee….” yea right…

  26. I agree with Josh and nemesys about the CS with Sprint was so bad that even the welfare dept who gives money away to people in need dont even treat the folks that bad. I was with Sprint for over 10 years and they did not have their sh*t together for the whole time. I would have to say that the services and phones I never had issues with, just the CS. I have been with Verizon since March 2010 and what a difference. I pay a little more but I dont get treated like cr*p at all. They give me all the options and let me decide what option I choose. I paid them $200 a month for 4 lines for all those years and I was just another sucker for them. EVO is a nice edition and Dan is trying to turn things around. I am open to giving them a try in a couple of years if keep hearing good things about CS

  27. I bought an HTC Hero last November before a trip to DC for the GPS instead of upgrading my Nuvi GPS maps. Walked into the Sprint store with a $188/pm plan for 4 phones on a family plan, and walked out with a $155/pm plan 4 phones, _including_ unlimited data! Sales rep kept finding discounts to give me :-)

    I work in an office with plenty of iPhones and made a few people gulp when they heard how little the Sprint plans are vs ATT.

    (My wife got a Samsung Moment, but didn’t like it and passed it on to her daughter who loves it (her 1st smart phone). Just waiting with world+dog to get the Epic when it comes out!)

  28. Sprint needs a flag ship android phone. Bigger than the evo or epic . A 2 ghz 4g with a big screen

  29. I’ve been with Sprint since they came to NY, almost forever now. I’ve had my share of dealings with CS and really only ONE time I can honestly say I was befuddled by the person on the other end. Lol… Other than that I have ALWAYS gotten what I wanted through perseverance and an unwillingness to just settle. They have always compensated me for my time spent on the phone with them and rectified any problem I was having at the time. I can tell you, one or two were doozy’s!

    Anyway… They’ve always had the most competitive plans, with decent signal coverage, especially in the bigger markets. What Sprint always played chasing the tail with was the handsets. Android definitely opened a door to what they hoped Palm would do. If they STAY current and continue to offer cutting edge handsets, they will add customers. If they stay content and don’t get greedy with DATA access pricing scheme’s like the other carriers, eventually that will attract customers as well. All in all, Sprint is a Good Mobile Carrier Network, looking to do the right thing.

    PS, for those who have had, or encounter difficulty with CS, I suggest a simple fix! Hang up and call back. There are times you will get someone who didn’t know ANYTHING. But lately, I made a few inquiry’s to CS and they were pleasant, helpful, etc., etc. I was very pleased.

    I like my Sprint, and I like it even more with my HTC Hero! :)

  30. Android needs to go into prepaid market. They should make phones for 200 dollars with 3g and wifi and sell it on prepaid markets. It will be game over for all other OS

  31. prepaid with anything running 2.2 would be amazing

  32. I went to sprint and never looked back (Tmobile)besides having the most powerful phone hardware wise, and no data cap on my plan, sprint also offers some great monthly discounts, because I work at a community hospital I get 23% knocked off of my monthly bill so my plan comes out to around $68 a month thats half of what you would pay over at Verizon or AT&T and here I dont have a data cap and so far Im loving my EVO and SPRINT I hear that after you have been with them for a while you get into something called “sprint premiere” witch gives you great perks like being able to upgrade your phone every year

  33. I’ve been trying to buy an HTC EVO – the Sprint website says sold out. I called customer service who directed me to go to a brick and mortar store because they might have one. (They wouldn’t take my name for a waiting list.) So I trudged in the heat (108) over to a Sprint store. They don’t have any EVOs, they only get 2 or 3 a couple of times a week, and they have a waiting list of 300. They also refused to put my name on a waiting list. I had been a customer with Nextel since 1999 or 2000, with never fewer than 2 phones, which Sprint bought out, so I’m a premier customer. I’ve never had a problem with the telephone service, even though dealing with customer service is a challenge. Now every time I see an elaborate advertisement for the EVO, I curse at them. It’s bait and switch, without the switch part because no one tried to sell me a different phone. No wonder the economy is bad. Even if you have money to buy something, no one will sell it to you.

  34. Sprint is great, NO dropped calls. EVO (besides battery life) is great.

  35. Don’t see why so many people have problems. I’ve been with them for over 9 years back when they had bar phones. I have the evo now love them even more and the prices to as well. Att and verizon or way to high.

  36. this phones needs to go to boost mobile for sure

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