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Verizon Wireless pummels Cingular with 2.1M postpaid adds in Q4

Verizon Wireless announced it captured 2.3 million net new customers in the fourth quarter, numbers that show it continues to dominate other national carriers with its retail performance.
Cingular Wireless L.L.C. brought in more net customers, with 2.4 million customer additions during the fourth quarter, however, fewer than 1 million of Cingular’s customers were high-value postpaid retail customers. Meanwhile, Verizon Wireless said it gained 2.1 million postpaid customers through its own channels in the fourth quarter. The carrier increased its customer base by 15 percent year-over-year to 59.1 million.
Although Cingular is still the largest U.S. carrier by customer base, with 61 million subscribers, Verizon Wireless again claimed the title of largest domestic carrier by total revenues. Verizon Wireless earned $10.1 billion for the quarter, surpassing Cingular’s $9.8 billion.
Verizon Wireless also continued its industry lead in customer turnover, posting a churn rate of just 1.14 percent for the fourth quarter, down from 1.22 percent in the same period of 2005. Retail churn was 1.1 percent, and retail postpaid churn came in at 0.89 percent, down from 1.02 percent in 2005’s fourth quarter.
Verizon Wireless’ average revenue per user for 2006’s fourth quarter was $50.12, an increase of 1.5 percent from the prior year’s fourth quarter. The company’s retail ARPU was slightly higher than its total ARPU, at $50.78.
Verizon Wireless saw its data ARPU increase by 63 percent year-over-year to $7.91. The company earned $4.5 billion in data revenues for the year, and data contributed 15.8 percent of all service revenues in the fourth quarter. The company said that more than a third of its gains came from increases in data use by business customers.
Verizon Communications Inc., which owns around 55 percent of Verizon Wireless, posted consolidated revenue of $22.6 billion for the fourth quarter. The company’s stock was up slightly in response to its overall performance.


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