updated 08:15 am EDT, Thu April 19, 2012
Verizon Q1 2012 defined by smartphone push
(Update: iPhone figures) Verizon reported winter quarter results that were defined by smartphones, albeit with current gaps in its data. The company saw a slight 4.6 percent increase in revenue to $28.2 billion but a much wider 15.7 percent jump in its net profit, which it quantified as 59 cents per share. Smartphones were key to the growth, Verizon said: 6.3 million were sold in the period, making up 72 percent of all its subscription phones.
Unlike in past quarters, Verizon didn't initially mention how many iPhones had been activated on its network. LTE devices were now more important on the network, but at 2.9 million were still less than half of Verizon's share; 2.1 million were smartphones. Since appearing on the provider last year, the iPhone has typically been the dominant smartphone on the network and may make up the bulk of the 3.4 million. The carrier may be waiting for Apple's own results, due April 24.
About 42 percent of those upgrading to smartphones were first-time smartphone users, Verizon said. The overall smartphone push was having a tangible impact on results, kicking its average revenue per person up 4.9 percent from a year ago. Churn, or customer turnover, was still minimal at just under one percent.
The cellular side added a net total of 734,000 customers and brought Verizon to exactly 93 million total customers, 88 million of which were regular subscriptions and the rest prepaid.
More detail of the US smartphone landscape should come both through Apple's results as well as AT&T's, both of which arrive the same day.
Update: during its fiscal results call, Verizon said it activated 3.2 million iPhones in the winter, or nearly all of its 3G devices and 51 percent of all its smartphones. It added that there were about 138,000 prepaid tablets, although 62 percent of its 390,000 total tablet adopters were regular subscription users.