The third quarter of this year ended with some interesting wireless developments, but industry leaders remained entrenched in their US-rankings.
With the FCC’s approval of the deal, Verizon had cleared their last regulatory hurdle in their bid to acquire wireless carrier Alltel. The merger will give Verizon Wireless the subscriber-base to leap-frog over AT&T into the No. 1 spot in the US wireless market. But, until the deal is finalized, Verizon Wireless will be playing second-fiddle to AT&T.
AT&T led the pack with 74.9 million subscribers. The US wireless market leader managed 2 million net subscriber adds in the third quarter. Verizon Wireless took second place with 2.1 million new subscribers added in Q3 2008, ending the quarter with 70.8 million customers under its wing. Sprint Nextel managed to hang on to its third-place position, despite a 1.3 million subscriber loss. T-Mobile USA and Alltel brought up the rear as the fourth and fifth largest US wireless carriers by subscriber counts.
In the end, Verizon Wireless is only runner-up to AT&T on a technicality. Next year, Verizon Wireless will eclipse AT&T as the leading wireless carrier in the US.
By the numbers:
- Verizon Wireless