Verizon loses 225,000 net postpaid consumer phone subscribers during Q1
Verizon lost 178,000 net phone subscribers overall during Q1
Verizon paid the FCC $45 billion during Q1 of this year to cover the cost of the mid-band spectrum it won during the C-Band auction. Verizon borrowed $12 billion during the fourth quarter of 2020 and $31 billion last March. The company plans on laying out $17.5 billion to $18.5 billion on capital spending this year to expand 5G mmWave service in both new and existing markets.
As a result, only a limited number of Verizon subscribers receive the blinding fast 5G speeds that consumers have been hearing about. And the carrier’s nationwide 5G coverage uses Dynamic Spectrum Sharing (DSS) which is actually slower than 4G LTE. Thus, spending $45 billion on mid-band airwaves might be the most important expenditure Verizon will make this year.
Verizon CFO Matt Ellis said, “The strength in our core business is driving higher revenues and strong demand for our products and services. We delivered strong operational and financial performance, giving us positive momentum as we end the first quarter. High quality, sustainable wireless service revenue growth, a recovery in wireless equipment revenues, strong Fios momentum and excellent Verizon Media trends led the way.”
The decline in Verizon’s postpaid phone subscribers during the first quarter could give T-Mobile the opportunity to close the gap between the hard charging second place carrier and the wireless provider it is chasing. T-Mobile is expected to report its first quarter 2021 earnings on May 5th.
During the first quarter, Verizon reported earnings per share (EPS) of $1.27, up from the $1.00 EPS it earned during the same quarter last year. The company’s stock closed at $58.14 for a loss of 25 cents or .43% on Wednesday.