NEW YORK -(Dow Jones)- Sprint Nextel should lower its rate of subscriber cancellation next year, with significant improvement in the second half, said Chief Financial Officer Paul Saleh.
The No. 3 wireless carrier, based on subscriptions, in the US - behind No. 1 Cingular and No. 2 Verizon Wireless - has struggled in the past two quarters with subscriber growth and customer cancellation. The company said it has been focusing on higher-quality customers, which has resulted in the losses.
Sprint has also reworked its brand to make it clearer to subscribers and is upgrading its network, particularly on the Nextel side. Saleh, speaking at a Tuesday analyst conference hosted by Credit Suisse First Boston, said the "brand is taking hold."
"It takes a while for perception to catch up to the reality of network improvement," he said.
The company continues to see declining revenue from the voice business, with some support from the data business. Saleh said that over the long term, the average revenue per user should stabilize as data revenue becomes more meaningful.
Sprint also plans a push-to-talk phone service similar to its Nextel line for its Sprint line of phones by 2007. It also expects to have a commercial launch of devices using WiMax technology in 2008.
In a recent Federal Communications Commission auction, several cable companies, which formed a joint venture with Sprint, acquired a large swath of wireless licenses. Saleh said the move provides both the cable companies and the joint venture with greater flexibility.
Saleh also commented on Sprint's affiliate, IPCS Inc. (IPCS). Sprint has acquired most of the other affiliates, which had balked at the merger with Nextel. With the focus on its core business and integration of the affiliates and Nextel, IPCS isn't the top priority for the company, he said.
- By Roger Cheng, Dow Jones Newswires; 201-938-2020; firstname.lastname@example.org
(END) Dow Jones Newswires"
|Previous Story||Next Story|