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Sprint halves its quarterly customer loss, increases revenue for the first time in ages

Chris Ziegler

If you can find the silver linings, the news is finally getting a little better over at the number three largest carrier in the States after countless quarters of brutal numbers. Sprint still isn't turning a profit or earning net customer adds, but it's continuing to stem losses by posting its first sequential rise in revenue in almost three years, clocking just under $8.1 billion for the quarter; that's still less than the revenue it posted a year ago, but hey, at least it's an improvement over Q4 2009's roughly $7.8 billion. All told, that works out to a net loss of $865 million, which is also better than Q4's $980 million. Net wireless customers fell by 75,000 -- considerably better than Q4's 148,000 -- but net postpaid customers fell by a much larger 578,000, suggesting that Boost Mobile's aggressive marketing is probably working. That's all well and good, but it also likely means that ARPU is on a downward trend; Sprint claims it was flat sequentially and down a dollar from $56 to $55 year-over-year. All told, it seems the company's fortunes are improving by baby steps -- but is it fast enough? And how much is the EVO 4G going to mix things up?

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