updated 11:00 am EDT, Mon July 27, 2009
Verizon Q2 and Palm Pre
Verizon this morning reported mixed results for its spring quarter but promised that Palm's new smartphone would reach its network. Although the carrier's revenue was up 11.3 percent from year to year at $26.9 billion, its actual profit was down 21.2 percent to 52 cents per share. Its subscriber based jumped to 87.7 million but was helped mostly by acquiring Alltel; it added 1.1 million customers outside of the takeover and was slightly slower than AT&T.
The lack of strong smartphones was evident at the carrier as the average revenue per person dropped 0.8 percent year-over-year to just over $51, suggesting that more customers were opting for feature-limited regular phones rather than devices that need more expensive data plans. Apart from early results, Verizon has been silent on BlackBerry Storm sales and also hasn't had much success from "halo" devices meant mostly to draw in new customers where AT&T has often attributed many of its gains to the iPhone.
In its fiscal results conference call, however, the company confirmed that it hopes to have the Palm Pre on its network early next year. The news backs rumors of a January launch and would represent Verizon's first real multi-touch smartphone. While Verizon brought on a large number of touchscreen devices in the wake of the iPhone, most of these weren't smartphones and none have had true multi-touch input. The Pre is being kept off its network in 2009 due to Sprint's roughly six-month exclusive deal with Palm.