Android has been a double-edged sword for Sprint over the summer. As the carrier picked up 644,000 new subscribers thanks largely to devices like the HTC EVO 4G and Samsung Epic 4G, it also managed to lose a good chunk of change due to the Android platform and its upgrade costs.
More than half of the new subs added picked up one of the new high-end Android devices, which is a good thing for the carrier. Sprint had been bleeding customers over the last few years, but for the past three quarters it has been seeing an increase in post-paid subscribers. In addition to the new handsets like the EVO and Epic, its Simply Everything plans are also very compelling.
Unfortunately, the large influx of Android users ended up costing Sprint, too. The carrier doubled its losses to $911,000,000 from last year due to the cost of handling all those upgrades. Still, in the long run it’s good for Sprint since the hundreds of thousands of new customers are on two-year contracts.
It’s not all Android and fancy new handsets, however. Sprint is continuing its WiMax or 4G expansion in bigger cities and giving customers an incentive to choose the carrier over others coupled with its attractive unlimited data packages.
It will be interesting to see where things go once Verizon and AT&T start pumping out their LTE networks next year and T-Mobile continues its HSPA+ expansion and marketing. Sprint might need a bigger boost to hang in there.