T-mobile Q1 Numbers Not So Hot

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T-mobile started off 2008 with a bang, announcing they had crossed into the 30 million customer mark and with close to 981,000 new subscribers. This year however, things are a little different with only 415,000 new subscribers coming in the first quarter of 2009. Facing increased competition from Sprint and other low cost carriers T-mobile is likely to find themselves under increased pressure to offer competitive pricing. The bright spot of this particular post however is that T-mobile reiterated its commitment to increase 3G coverage from the current 107 million pops to over 205 million. 

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  • Kickstar13

    Competitive pricing means better deals for T-Mobile customers. I wonder what T-Mobile has in mind.

  • t1 connect

    minor setback, we still have all the cool phones now or soon will so when ppl start realizing, then numbers start growing awaiting.

  • MAXIMUS

    Here’s the message……

    T-Mobile fire Robert Dotson and put someone in charge that knows what they’re doing. Want to spend another year lagging behind Sprint…of all companies?

    Listen to what your subscribers want…better handsets and 3G coverage. My gosh….the rest of the pack is already looking to the future (LTE) and T-Mobile is giving us their grand plan of rolling out 3G for the rest of the year. HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!

    T-Mobile doesn’t need to be more competitive in service pricing…..its in the mobile gear where they suffer so badly. But their 3G network should have been here 3 years ago.

    WAKE UP T-MOBILE!!!!

  • Enrgy52

    @ Maximus

    I completely agree.

  • Galen20K

    I think its Great we’re Finally starting to see some New Phones people actually WANT and that the 3G Network is Growing faster than any other 3G network did but T-Mobile PLEASE DON’T Mess up Rolling out LTE or I fear it will be the Death of you. = (

    Get on the Ball, that’s one of the Reasons you bought that new Spectrum. You have the room for LTE RIGHT NOW so Get TO it!!!!

    I’ve been with you forEVER since VOiceStream Days and I Really don’t want to leave BUT if LTE Fails on TMob, as much as I’d Hate to I’d have to find Greener Pastures.

    SO LETS GET LTE OUT THERE!!!!

    WHOot!!!

    - D

  • chuck

    Just merge with AT&T so I can get an iphone without switching carriers.

    The answer to T-Mo’s problems is to carry more appealing handsets that target a more mature consumer base. It’s time to go after the business and older consumer crowd and not just the teenagers. When your only 3g phones are the sidekick and the g1, you should expect to struggle in the market.

  • Sanjay

    @Maximus, I agree too. I keep waiting like a fool. If I had known a year ago when they starting rolling out their 3g in New York that I would still be waiting a year later for both 3g and a 3g phone I want, I would not have stayed this long. As soon as I decide on my next handset, I will probably go unless T-mobile has one out first. I am waiting on the Palm Pre to see if it is all they say it is. With AT&T increasing speeds to 7.2 and expanding their coverage maybe the iphone 3.0 will be the way to go. I think T-mobile some time ago decide to put its eggs in Google’s basket which is not my cup of tea, yet.

  • efjay

    Simple solution – better 3G phones, increased 3G coverage + continued value pricing. Give ALL consumers a reason to consider T-Mobile as their carrier, not just those looking for the cheapest carrier.

  • Lau Pan

    Maybe this will prompt T Mobile to get into the Windows smart Phone Game. We are still waiting for the HTC Line up and the 3G. What is this delay all about. Seems like AT&T and Verizon have no problem being in the Game. After 8 years being a loyal customer if somthing does not happen soon I need to look elswhere. T mobile needs to address the wants of the business community if they want to have a successful year.

  • Jon

    T-Mobile is already pushing forward with a good set of phones and strategies for this year:

    Starting with the G1, TMO has steadily been releasing good, or at least attractive feature phones and smartphones, and plans to for the foreseeable future. The G1, Behold, Memoir, CS5, CS8, Magic. The 3g coverage doubling by the end of the year. The unlimited plan which was just recently unveiled. A resurgent advertising campaign.

    TMO looks like they’re finally starting to get their crap together.

  • Rdb

    It’s not Dotson, it’s the people they keep bringing from outside the company. Every person I see brought it from the outside is from Gap, Gamestop, Williams Sonoma. Yes, they have tons of retail experience, but wireless is a completely different beast than folding T-Shirts or trying to sell over priced video game guides. The number of loyal internal employees that are being passed over on a regular basis is ridiculous.

    Yes, T-Mobile’s way behind the curve on 3G and will be even further behind the curve on 4G, but I don’t think that’s going to be the death blow.

    T-Mobile’s been the “value leader” in comparison to Verizon, Sprint, and AT&T, but people trying just to save a buck or with subprime credit are jumping to Cricket and Metro. Couple that with the fact that it’s getting hammered when it comes to handset selection. How many popular exclusive phones does T-Mobile have? Two, the G1 and the Sidekick (I didn’t say great because the Sidekick is a cashcow that is really a POS). I lost count this quarter the number of sales I lost because all the customer wanted was a non-PDA phone with a full keyboard that was under $100. What’s that leave them? The Gravity.

    Your honor, I rest my case. Good luck with the Big Switch and all the hoopla thats coming with the sales meeting everyone’s holding in May.

  • Rotten Core

    Truthfully, I’m a G1 user and fully support it but it has been lackluster so far. T-mo just does not have that ‘WOW!’ phone. They need a Blackberry Bold or Storm and they need better 3G handsets. Why they are still selling the Wing and how did Sprint get all the HTC Touchs and TouchPros or whatever is beyond me. I know TouchPro2 might be coming for T-mo later, but as per usual w/ T-mo… too little too late! Now Sprint has 4G television ads? Yikes. T-mo IS far behind in many ways.

    When other carriers get the latest HTC handsets, T-mo gets the G1, Shadow and still sells the Wing.
    When other carriers get the Blackberry Bold and Storm, T-mo gets the Pearl Flip and the old Curve in 3 new colors.
    At&t offers like 10 different phones w/ full QWERTY, T-mo announces a re-hash of the same old Sidekick (oh, but w/ 3G. Whoopity doo!).
    T-mo keeps picking up and selling the Nokia low-level handsets… while ignoring the N9* series which is one of the few phones that actually could rival the iphone.
    While the Xperia turned out to be way overpriced… T-mo could have picked it up and subsidized it to be real cheap w/ contract (and seeing the current state of Ericsson, it would have been prudent for them to agree to a deal as well.)

    T-mo having that odd 3G band that no other carrier has isn’t going to help it’s 3G market. I hope… and assume… T-mo is working on LTE or wi-max or 4G or whatever already because they need to catch up and not be behind all the time.

    They also need to completely fire the idiots who think things like the Cameo digital picture frame is a good idea. What a waste of T-mo resources that could have gone to bringing another handset home. Stupid picture frame. I don’t even believe the Verizon Pod is going to do all that well and now I’m reading that T-mo wants to do an Android Pod… please. No. One thing at a time. Let’s get some better handsets and finish up this 3G rollout business before you take a chance on unproven gadgets. Thanks.

    Ah… one last comment about the Sidekick. The Sidekick is like Star Trek. Only the people who liked Star Trek before will like Star Trek now. T-mo needs to JJ Abrams-it… because once Paramount let JJ Abrams do Trek, suddenly I’m hearing from people who hate Trek expressing interest in seeing it. My point is… a niche product only loved by the dedicated few is not enough to equal success and will eventually dwindle.

  • J

    I think there is going to be a complete facelift. The phones and 3G are definitely in the spotlight as well as advertising. I’ve also been given a guarantee that T-Mobile will not be the last in the 4G game. We may not be talking aloud about it, but its not being ignored. Personally I think this was needed to get things back in the right direction.

  • MAXIMUS

    @Rdb Oh…but it’s Dotson’s fault that these buffoons from the outside now work for T-Mobile. It’s his fault that the company’s competitive edge falls short of the likes of AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint. Not just that..but he’s the head guy….he’s the final decision maker.
    I worked for Cingular once upon a time – in the IT dept. I can remember going to our ‘All Hands’ meetings and listening to Stan Sigman – former head of Cingular tell how aggressive he was going to be in being the number one carrier…couple months later they bought AT&T. That guy always got the job done. Say what you will about the ‘new’ AT&T but they don’t play…they’ve been wiping up the competition. Verizon picking up AllTell puts them back on the most subscribers spot but AT&T has the phones we all envy and desire.

    T-Mobile has been the laggard for the past couple years and they seem to be happy with their position in the market. They might was well be MetroPCS or Cricket……T-Mobile is at the bottom of the competitive market. Like the rest of the bottom feeders.

    Dotson should be fired for not having the balls to aggressively get 3G pushed out years ago…instead of sitting around waiting spectrum to become available. How much of the spectrum auctioned off last year did T-Mo acquire? Not much,if any. Better yet…..NONE! Know who did? Verizon and AT&T grabbed the loin’s share of it. T-Mobile….just like the dorks they’ve become, picked up none. You do stay competitive if you allow your competitors to buy the precious spectrum right from under you?

    The bottom line is this….do you know who hurts the most in this mess? The subscribers. We’re forced to watch the ongoing mismanagement of our subscription dollars, hoping that things will change when they’re not. At least not until the board members become nauseated from watching the company kill itself from within. The last thing I’d like to see is T-Mobile be gobbled up by AT&T regardless of the cool phones they offer. We need T-Mobile to become even more viable in this space to shake things up.

    They have a change but they’re blowing it royally.

  • J

    T-Mobile doesn’t need spectrum. You really cannot fault them for not buying what they do not need. They have a spectrum surplus in most markets. It would not make financial sense to buy more when you have 4.2 billion dollars worth you haven’t fully utilized. If they had, that would mean less money to build the 3G network up.

  • Danny

    T-Mobile is in a tough spot right now. Not only do they have to compete against the Verizon’s and ATT’s of the world, they also find themselves directly competing with lower priced no contract companies like Metro who kicked their butt in Q1.

    If you lower prices too much, you cheapen the brand and only attract ghetto sub prime subs who are likely not pay bills late.

    If you make things to expensive there is no way someone would choose you over the much larger carriers.

    We are in a recession, but I think it’s time for T-Mobie to step up their coverage enhancements. During the boom years, they had every opportunity to do so and still make a profit but they chose the cheaper route and unfortuantely a less robust reputation to boot.

    As the smallest of the 4 big players, they can use this economic downturn to their advantage if they play it right. I just hope the mother ship (DT) doesn’t scale back tech upgrades at the admonition of shareholders. Now is not the time to slack. When the economy gets better, they’ll be stronger because of it.

    I would really like them to focus on LTE instead of being last place again with 3G. Find ways to mesh the current network with LTE and expand it rapidly adding capacity to keep up with demand. Work with automobile vendors, notebook vendors and GPS aggregators to push their product over their network to increase revenue while opening up new doors outside the mobile phone market.

  • t1 connect

    @max i agree on that whole lte and 3g thing in fact i was thinking the same thing yesterday but just remember who owns tmobile and the limitations that robert dotson are allowed to make he can make decisions but hes just part of a decision amking team.

  • MAXIMUS

    I’m putting an open challenge out to Robert Dotson. I can run T-Mobile better than you.

    @J – If this is so true about T-Mobile having all the spectrum they need then there’s ABSOLUTELY no excuse for them to set where they currently are. How can you lag behind all the your three biggest competitors while having the prospect of being eaten alive by the piranha that trail you? Doesn’t add up.

    You can’t tout that you have the best customer service when you really don’t have much to offer in the first place.
    Let’s be honest with oursleves – the G1 has fizzled out…people are already wanting something else. G2? That’s a G1 without a keyboard…big whoop. The phone still lacks in specs when you match it against the iPhone. I don’t ever recall running out of memory on my iPhone like I did on my G1. I don’t ever recall my iPhone feeling so hollow like the G1 either. Big heaping ball of cheap plastic.

    I live in Southern California so I don’t have too much complaint with the 3G service. It’s been pretty good here. My biggest complaints are how long it takes T-Mobile to respond in this market. Other carriers went 3G nearly 3 years ago. T-Mobile….last year. Other carriers had a barrel of new quality handsets. T-Mobile…more of the same ones. Oh….in more assortment of colors. Did you see the new cherry Curve 8300…..or how about the lemon lime Sideshit? Yes….I said what I mean.

    How many touchscreen phones have the competition gone through in a year and a half? Dozens. LATE 2008 we finally get one – the G1. Then the Behold and the Memoir.

    WinMo phones – who’s as tired as I am of seeing the same ol’ Dash and Wing? If I’m not mistaken the Wing hit T-Mobile in 2007. OMG!!!! They’re finally decided to attempt to refresh the product line a it with the Touch Pro2…and who really knows if it’ll really show up.

    Let’s not forget our 3G’less Blackberry we were all blessed with. The 8900 is a good phone lacking a key element of modern tech.

    I could go on for days…..and I’m not going to stop my rants until Mr. Rollie Pollie Dotson starts listening.

  • J

    There is a bog difference in having the spectrum and utilizing the spectrum. Playong catchup is not a fun game. We are catching up to the other 3 though it may not be too apparent right now. There is an enormous undertaking that customers have not seen yet but will see soon. T-Mobile was put 3 years behind the competition. We are trying to gain 2 of those years back in one year.the 3G network will be solid by years end. It may still be behind but much less so. The true challenge will be the new phones. Without the customer base T-Mobile may have to either flex their international muscle or be innovative about striking deals with phone makers. It feels like a real footrace right now. I really can’t think of a time when we’ve I’ve worked on a more aggressive projecy.

  • Roger

    I am waiting for them to fix the data+sms “problem”. The number one thing a mobile carrier should be doing is making the phone and service a more integral and compelling part of the user’s life. For every service you nickel and dime, the more likely consumers are to not use it or to seek out alternatives.

    I used to use SMS but not any more, since I don’t have $5 worth of usage a month. I have a BlackBerry Flip and don’t have a data plan because I don’t have $25 worth of usage a month (and 99% of the time have wifi accessible anyway).

    If tmo want my phone to be more valuable to me then they need to figure out how to do it without charging me an extra $300 per year. Simple things like making SMS to/from MyFaves free would be a good way to improve SMS usage (and consumes way less network resources than the free phone calls).

    Having the first 5MB of data per month be free and then charging the $25 data plan for the month if you go over the 5MB would make people more willing to try out data, and possibly get hooked on it.

    They aren’t going to make any additional money from people who do 3 SMS per month or 1 MB of data anyway, but by making the barrier to entry so expensive they aren’t even making it possible to get those people started.

  • MAXIMUS

    @J What were you guys thinking? Did you think things would be OK lagging 3 years behind the competition? Did you think catching up was going to be an easy task? You guys sat on the Cingular network way too long after the AT&T acquisition. You guys should have been ramping up back in 2004, instead you guys sat fat and happy piggybacking on an already over capacity Cingular network. You think your technicians responsible for piecing the network together are happy being under the pressure? I’ve talked to lots of them that don’t like the late urgency they’ve been handed. Your 3G rollout should have happened years ago. Hindsight doesn’t help much especially in these economic times.
    I find it hard to believe that after a dismal quarterly report and the state of the economy T-Mobile is going to turn any heads. Financially you took a kick in the nuts and you also need to keep costs down. December is a long ways away but I’d bet we as consumers will hear yet another pile of lame excuses as to why you’re sitting where you are in the pack. I’ve already prepared myself for it. I suggest the readers of this blog to do the same.

  • Steve

    T mobile needs to be the first of the big 4 to offer unlimited “everything” (voice, text, web, e-mail) for $50. There is no way that Boost Mobile can do it for that price including tax on a nationwide network and bigger companies with larger subscriber bases can’t!

    If you look at the reviews of Metropcs and Boost, both are sorely lacking in customer service which is something that T-mobile is recognized for in addition to being the Value provider. That would be a great competitive advantage and draw tons of new customers over.

  • Julacho

    Sprint already offers the all you can eat everything by 100 dollars, T-Mobile should come with the 50 dollars one using VOIP for the phone calls.
    T-Mobile has to be the first pushing VOIP calls, there are 50 million people with families in Mexico and South AMerica that already use calling cards(VOIP) why not calling straight from your cell phone

    Zer01( coming under AT&T network) will offer an all you can eat “everything” by 60 bucks or 70 if you want unlimited calls to International destinations(40 countries) is gonna eat alive T-Mobile;

    http://www.zer01mobile.com/

    I will stick with T-Mobile until December is nothing changes, sorry Germans I am gonna get me British(Verizon) or American(Zer01-AT&T).

    Viel Glück(Good luck)!!!

  • mingkee

    I think T-Mobile can do the following
    1. offer 6-7pm nights for mountain and pacific markets
    2. include 50 incoming text with individual plans
    3. offer 10 myfaves per number instead of 5
    myfaves is a good selling point as the customer base is around 34 millions, myfaves gives more advantage than other carriers
    4. offer National Business Plan + myfaves, starting from $50 which has
    600AT, unlimited m2m and myfaves, 500 text/MMS included
    5. unlimited everything regional plan for $60, that includes
    unlimited domestic minutes, unlimited domestic text/MMS, up to 10GB data plus tethering
    6. offer cash back for customers sign contract, but they bring own phone, this can be $150 for 2 years, $100 for 1 year
    7. lower data services price except web2go, that
    $10 for 50MB with 400 messages, $10 more after 50MB
    $10 for 100MB, $10 more after 100MB
    $20 for 250MB with unlimited messages, $10 more after 250MB
    $20 for up to 10GB and 400 messages
    $30 for up to 10GB and unlimited messages
    $40 for up to 10GB BES and unlimited messages
    $45 for up to 10GB Total Internet Plus instead of webconnect
    $2 per GB after 10GB
    tethering is supported with these data services, STOP disabling tethering on HSPA phones (T-Mobile never knows how big number of customers do tethering)
    8. offer daily web2go for prepaid customers, $1.5 a day, up to 350MB quota, $1 for every GB after that
    9. other than UMA, T-mobile should offer more indoor reception solution, including femtocell and sell indoor repeater
    10. change motto back to Get More for Life, Stick Together is really bad, that means we get stuck for nothing
    11. bring more different variety of phones, and keep good balance of brands, and to avoid outsiders think “isn’t it Samsung Mobile, why Samsung phone is all over the corp store?”

  • Bottz125

    Maximus you really nailed it!! I agree with you 100%!!

  • Enrgy52

    Look at Maximus go! and again he couldn’t be more right. I myself have a unlocked 2g iphone on t-mo and I love it, but i really wish it was 3g. I hate waiting. I just don’t get why they roll out these handsets that only really appeal to teenage kids. Don’t get me wrong the BB 8900 is great, I have one sitting here… but i use the web daily.. and its slow as ****. If I was not under contract I would move my 4 lines and almost $300 monthly I pay to At&t.

    Why do they slow roll the new stuff??? just look at phonearena.com and look at at&t’s and verizons and even sprints offerings, t-mo has 4 new handsets listed…. I know there are more than that, but at&t has like 20!!! sad. and then to top it off you look at t-mo germany and uk sites and they have all the cool handsets… explain that.

  • Wyatt

    The comparable plans and add-ons I have with T-Mobile would cost me an extra $110 per month extra with AT&T– that’s over $1200 a year I’m saving. In this tough economy, that’s MORE THAN ENOUGH to keep me as a customer. And FWIW I have the G1 and think it’s a great device.

  • J

    @max

    Waiting on 3G was a decision way beyond my paygrade. Up until recently I was a tech and the techs feel the same way about it as the customers. Until about 3 years ago T-Mobile corporate completely underestimated data importance. That has changed greatly over the last couple of years but its an uphill race now. My group is even improving our edge network while working on 3G. The changes in the phone lineup should start reflecting the change from a ‘voice first’ network we have been to the ‘complete network’ we are going to be. I believe the success of the G1 has proven how needed thesee devices are. Its definitely not a perfwct device but the revenue has been excellent. There is much more still to come.

  • MAXIMUS

    Thanks everyone for compliments. I write these comments to benefit us all and to release my frustrations and sometimes praise for the company I love.

    I think we can all agree that T-Mobile has some positive sides to their business plan business plan. But this is not a business designed to rate who’s the nicest…it’s being the most aggressive that wins. T-Mobile suffers miserably in this area.

    @Enrgy52 you’re right as well. I’ve been to the UK a number of times in the past couple years and I always come home frustrated by the T-Mobile US handset offerings. T-Mo UK has an awesome – the have the Nokia 5800, LG Arena (KM900), Samsung Pixon, and the G1. And the list is bigger than what I mentioned. In the US we’re forced fed the G1 as if its the last phone on the planet. I just saw the about T-Mobile’s glee of selling one million G1s. I honestly think that number is a bit exaggerated. Selling million phones doesn’t translate into use on the network. I had two G1s – I sold one to someone that unlocked it and used it on AT&T. I called them a couple weeks ago and they tossed it in a drawer after a couple months of use. The other G1 is now a toy for my 13 month old daughter. Seriously.

    Look….we as faithful subscribers of T-Mobile need to stand up, rant, and protest our dissatisfaction on how things are run. If we don’t stand up for something we’ll stand for anything. Don’t settle for what T-Mobile is dishing out.

  • achilles

    T-mobile just needs to do one thing to increase data subscribers: Get phones that aren’t missing key features. Wi-fi, 3G, camera flash, and Adobe flash internet browser support should be on every smartphone.
    Samsung Behold: No Wi-fi. Samsung Memoir: no Wi-Fi. Motorola ZN5: No 3G. G1: No camera flash. All Blackberry’s: no support coming for Flash internet browser. People will use data, if data is presented in a way that it is worth using.

  • J

    Getting those features is the tough part. You have to convince the phone makers to do it. T-Mobile would love for every phone to have wifi, uma, full inter, 8Mp camera w/xenon flash, 8gb of memory, be thin as the iphone, and still have 8 hours of talk time on the battery. It just isn’t that simple. T-Mobile takes all these things and hands it to Samsung, HTC, Motorola, and Nokia. They in turn say “Ok, you will likely sell only X number of these. Thats not going to cover our engineering costs, so we will give you this but not that.”

    3G is a different animal than GSM for phones. Before we get better deals on phones since AT&T had basicly the same frequency bands. They could sell T-Mobile and AT&T the same phone. Now, T-Mobile is on their own for the most part. The lateness of a 3G Blackberry is a perfect example. T-Mobile wanted one at launch, but its all in RIM’s hands. Thats not really a company you can strongarm into speeding up because they offer a popular and pretty unique product.

  • MAXIMUS

    @J I have a sense that you work somewhere in the ranks of T-Mo and I appreciate you coming to their defense. But the difficulty of getting features in a phone are a half truth in some manners. Step away an look at T-Mo and everyone else in cell carrier biz. What sets one carrier apart from the other and with the relationships they’ve built with the handset makers? I said the word that T-Mobile has failed to strongly establish…..relationships. That’s the biggest issue with T-Mobile…failure to focus on building and maintaining strong relationships with the likes of Nokia, Samsung, LG, RIM, HTC and others. How is it that AT&T has handset makers salivating to get phones on their shelves? Because AT&T kept very strong relationships with these guys. I witnessed it firsthand while working for Cingular/AT&T. There was rarely every a week I didn’t see reps from Sony Ericsson, Motorola, LG, RIM in our office meeting with the marketing guys and top executives showing off their goods.

    T-Mobile’s strategies have been off focus for quite some time and now trying to build these relationships are much more difficult because of the lack of investment made to getting a more of these handsets on the network. There’s no excuse for this….so many of the other carriers have these features…why not T-Mo?

    It is in fact a numbers game but who’s to blame when you fail to be more competitive? The handset makers look at the field of players and push hard at sending phones their way with features they know the subscribers want. They also know the carrier of choice will push an aggressive marketing campaign for the phones. I’m really tired of watching commercials where the other carriers are showing off their great phones and the best T-Mobile can come up with is a awkwardly cute MyFaves commercial. Give us phones!!!!!

  • uknowme…

    i know some of you out there, and so am i, are probably hating MAXIMUS right now for killing us T-Mobile Fans with the truth about T-Mobile, but he is right… And honestly MAXIMUS, well said.

    i’m starting to question why i’m even working for t-mobile, but at the same time i understand that t-mobile does not have the budget to belch out all the new phones. back in the day, relationships is what kept companies strong and together, but now a days, money talks. when it comes to their network and their 3G and future 4G then questions need to be answered. t-mobile has almost double the towers compared to the other carriers out there. t-mobile has been slacking with data and their 3G and the thing is, they have all the means necessary to put up 4G; look at AT&T and their TV DATA capabilities, they are making cake off of that, apparently.

    i hate to say it, but AT&T is looking good right now. T-Mobile, it might be Good Bye…

  • foo

    it’s really sad and disappointing when the ceo said a couple years ago that the 3G roll out was only for voice capacity relief and that data was not high on the priority list.

    Seriously wtf was he and his circle of friends thinking? Data isnt improtant? now it’s being pushed like crack is pushed in the inner city we need to increase data arpu etc wtf really? Gee what a novel idea…it’ll be a sad day indeed when we lag Sprint of all companies.

    Here’s a tip start advertising your devices and how you have 3G devices and dare i say a 3G NETWORK. We launched the Sidekick LX with NO FANFARE seriously wtf, with all the tweeners suckling on Twitter, Facebook, and myspace why are you not advertising these in commercials? Instead we have this sophomoric attempt at being a BRAND with these lame somewhat whimsical attempt at humor.

    I have a feeling DT will step in soon and take over…you watch

  • MAXIMUS

    @uknowme I’m a T-Mobile fan. I’ve been a subscriber for over 5 years….I’m on their loyalty plan and I appreciate the gesture they have made to the faithful of us subscribers. I’ve taken the good with the bad but for the past couple years all we’re been handed from T-Mobile is bad. Bad management judgements, bad phones….good customer service…but that only goes so far.

    We live in a technologically progressive society. Every aspect of our being has been influenced by technology playing it’s part in making life a bit easier for us. In the last decade the cell phone become the centerpiece of our lifestyle. What would we do without them? How many of us use them as our primary means of communication? Most of us.

    The carriers that we choose all have insight in this area since they can see the usage trends on their networks and plan accordingly. In T-Mobile’s case they just bucked the trend and decided that voice was the only option their subscribers were concerned with. How wrong they were. As the trend in home internet speeds increased who wouldn’t think that these same consumers would want to have that type of speed in a mobile device? Verizon knew….AT&T knew….Sprint knew. T-Mobile???? Well….we’re banking on voice…oh…and the Sidekick R2D2 Edition.

    As I said earlier…relationships are the key component in attracting business. T-Mobile can’t cry about it because it’s been ever so apparent the weak relationships they’ve had with the handset makers. You can’t fault them for not being inclined to make more devices for the network while other carriers have been much kinder.

    I don’t claim to know everything about this market but I think I have a pretty good idea about what’s wrong with most of it and why some do better than others. Also having the opportunity to work for a carrier in the past gave me a closer look at how things function. And definitely working in the IT department allows you to see memos and hear conversations between top execs and vendors on the direction each company is headed. They work as a partnership.

    In the case of T-Mobile…they’re banking the farm on Android. What a COLOSSAL mistake that will be. Android is OK but it’s a baby when you put it again the likes of Apple’s OS Blackberry. Partly the OS but mainly the devices. Android should have been showcased on something more capable and better looking than the G1. Say what you will but looks kill. And the G1 is one ugly chick when you put in next to the iPhone. It’s like putting Kathy Griffin up against Angelina Jolie. Yeah…you could do them both but which one would you rather do?
    I’ll take Jolie.

  • foo

    you’re very perceptive and pretty on the money. The management is in panic mode to try and be more competitive. I know that the handset lineup is improving drastically but it needs to market it better. Dont make this fave 5 the center piece make it a part of a device’s launch. The Sidekick is coming yet no advertising…the 3G internet dongle is out yet now hype…ATT comes out w/ one and they have 3 or 4 different commercials about it. verizon talks about it and even sprint…it’s like tmo is afraid to have anyone discover that they have a 3G network…heaven forbid we advertise about it and they’ll use it.

    what really kills me…was Steve Jobs approached Tmo USA first…and hommie didnt want to play…i wonder if he throws up in the mouth a little everytime he sees an Iphone commercial followed by “only on ATT”

  • Matthew Boyd

    I’ve been working for T-Mobile for the last year. And, with the economy the way it’s been, I couldn’t be more grateful to have a job. But watching my own company trip on their own two feet every few months is killing me.

    I know I’m late to this article. Many months, in fact. But I stumbled into this article by searching “robert dotson fail iphone” in Google. And sure enough, I land here. T-Mobile is the “value leader” in the big 4 mobile phone providers within the USA. But our value is in the monthly bill. It’s not felt in their offered handsets, sadly. One first thing I have to get off my chest …THE DAYS OF PRIVATE LABELING HANDSETS ARE OVER!!! MOVE ON! Where companies like Apple and RIM succeed is by keeping their products as hush-hush as possible until near launch. No one is better at this than Apple. By the time anyone officially hears about their products, it’s near launch – giving little time to ponder the purchase. And the buzz is ridiculous. Enough so, where lines wrap around street corners for days. Who else can you say has that kind of success story for a phone launch… for every generation released so far? Right… no one.

    T-Mobile makes the fatal error presuming that most of their phone geeks aren’t savvy enough to learn that products, such as the MyTouch, aren’t actually T-Mobile hardware. The handset is actually HTC, and has been available for the last 3 months in other countries. Same with the Touch Pro. Same with the Dash. Same with the Shadow. All HTC. All private labeled. All released in other countries first, with T-Mobile USA coming in dead last on launch. So with the MyTouch around the corner, I’m already hearing heavy buzz about the next-generation Android handsets, like the HTC Hero, Samsung Galaxy, HTC Click, Sony-Ericsson “Rachael.” Because their is no mystery there. No surprises. No “wow.” Then Apple makes an announcement, and steals everyone’s thunder.

    Robert Dotson – T-Mobile needs a long overdue “mobile makeover.” It’s time to redesign the brand to revolve around mobile service, instead of hardware products. The MyTouch – I’m sorry, but it’s the Magic. The G1, last I saw, it was the Dream. Who makes it? HTC – not T-Mobile. T-Mobile Dash …er Snap. The Sidekick – last I remember, Sharp makes it. And it’s called the “Hip Top.” Why we change names is beyond me. I personally feel like we’re being deceitful, offering an older product that was rebranded to make it look new. Sort of like changing the expiration dates on milk cartons to keep it in the display fridge longer.

    Let’s offer the best coverage and service we possibly can. Let’s qualify, quality check, and integrate handsets into our line, and let the manufacturer do the marketing. Brand power is key. Which is why Apple, RIM, & Palm do so well. Let HTC be HTC. And Sharp be Sharp.

    And let’s get LTE done ASAP. Let’s be the leader in this, and not fall dead last …again… in rolling out an unavoidable roadmapped service. This is important.

    I’m going to try to end with this – Your customers aren’t stupid. Yet, the decisions T-Mobile executives make leave me thinking that they view their customers as less than savvy. Or are too comfortable with old methods and old technology themselves to propel a cutting edge company into the next tier. This needs to be remedied ASAP. Or another company with a hostile takeover proposal will serve that remedy.

    And one final note – The MyTouch packaging looks like it’s aimed towards attracting a 16 year old kid. Marketing team behind this design …FIRED!

    I’m done. Thank you, Goodnight!