Verizon Wireless Subscriber Growth Goes Up, Falls Short of Expectations

Paul Lilly

Overall it was another strong quarter for Verizon Communications, which added 882,000 retail postpaid wireless customers, plus another 367,000 wholesale and other connections for a total of 1.3 million connections in its third fiscal quarter for 2011. Smartphones accounted for 39 percent of Verizon's retail postpaid customer phone base, up from 36 percent in the second quarter, Verizon said.

Those are solid numbers, but according to Reuters , analysts on average were expecting Verizon to grow its retail postpaid wireless customer base by more than a million subscribers. That isn't much cause for concern, however, as Verizon's main rival AT&T reported less than half as many (319,000) one day prior.

AT&T also said it sold 1 million iPhone 4S devices, while Verizon didn't mention Apple's new flagship smartphone, which are not included in its Q3 results. But Verizon did bring up its 4G LTE network, the largest in the U.S. with availability in 165 markets covering more than 186 million people.

"Verizon Wireless delivered impressive results across the board in the third quarter, and we are geared up for an even better fourth quarter, with new smartphones, tablets and data devices coming to market," said Lowell McAdam , Verizon president and chief executive officer. "In FiOS, we expect to capitalize on pent-up demand and deliver stronger growth in the fourth quarter. In enterprise, the integration of Terremark and recent acquisition of CloudSwitch have significantly improved our competitive positioning."

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