During a recent investor event, Marcelo Claure, the chief executive officer of Sprint, talked about a pricing increase on the carrier’s wireless service possibly happening next quarter. This marked Claure’s first public statement since news of the collapse of the T-Mobile-Sprint merger talks broke last weekend. As reported by CNET, Claure did not remark regarding which specific plans will get a price hike, and Sprint has not issued any official statement regarding the move.
The last few months have seen various mobile operators busy themselves with offering reduced pricing schemes, promotional deals, bundled offers, and even free deals -- all in the name of attracting new customers and keeping their respective subscribers (while trying to steal away their rivals’). With all that increased competition, the consumers, of course, came out as the real winners, not only enjoying a wider range of options to choose from, but also benefiting immensely from all those budget friendly deals.
But as they say, nothing lasts forever. In the end, wireless carriers just could not sustain their aggressive promotions for that long, and sooner or later, they would have to get back to their previous rhythm. So naturally, prices that have been dropped before just might go up. Needless to say, consumers will have some adjusting to do, and perhaps look for delicious affordable deals elsewhere, like from prepaid wireless service providers for instance (who are getting more competitive in their own right).
It does indeed appear that promotional deals are slowing down recently, even with the release of Apple’s eagerly awaited iPhone X flagship (which launched just this weekend). According to Claure, one of the reasons is the limited availability (just an hour after preorders had started, ship times for the device have lengthened to five to six weeks). It goes without saying that it feels weird to offer generously discounted deals for a handset that is sort of hard to get. It was a different story a year ago because there were enough units of the iPhone 7 models to go around.
Apart from teasing potential price hikes, Claure also took the opportunity to offer his thoughts with regards to the failed merger negotiations with T-Mobile. What it all came down to, according to him, was that SoftBank (the parent company of Sprint) was just not ready to grant T-Mobile and its parent Deutsche Telekom full control of Sprint’s (and the combined business entity’s) operations. Moving forward, Sprint’s priority now is to upgrade its network and leverage its massive treasure trove of spectrum.
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