Deutsche Telekom Stories June 17, 2015

Conflicting reports emerge regarding Deutsche Telekom talks with Comcast to sell T-Mobile

German Manager Magazine (via Reuters) reports today that Deutsche Telekom is in talks with Comcast and others to sell T-Mobile US. Sources say that these potential buyers include satellite TV provider Dish (as corroborated by Reuters), but Comcast is seen as the most attractive option from the point of view of the German telecom, due to its financial strength and ability to buy T-Mobile’s shares in whole:

Deutsche Telekom is in talks with U.S. cable company Comcast about a potential sale of T-Mobile US, German Manager Magazin reported on Wednesday, citing sources.

Deutsche Telekom is in talks with several parties, including satellite provider Dish, according to the magazine, but Comcast is viewed as a more attractive buyer by the German telecoms provider’s management.

Comcast would be a better candidate as it is financially stronger and would be able to make an offer to buy all shares in T-Mobile US, Manager Magazine reported.

As reported by Bloomberg, T-Mobile and Deutsche Telekom shares rose slightly following the news:

T-Mobile shares rose as much as 3 percent in early trading, before the U.S. markets opened. Deutsche Telekom traded 1.8 percent higher at 15.31 euros at 1:44 p.m. in Frankfurt. T-Mobile, which is the fourth-largest U.S. mobile-phone company and is about 66 percent owned by Deutsche Telekom, has a market value of $31.5 billion.

A conflicting report has since surfaced, thanks to a “Comcast source” for ArsTechnica. According to the person familiar with Comcast’s thinking, the company isn’t actually interested in buying T-Mobile. As of yet, no official statement has been made by Comcast or T-Mobile, but Deutsche Telekom has said that it “does not comment on rumors and speculation.”

Deutsche Telekom Stories March 31, 2015

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German Apple Stores have dropped Vodafone and O2 contracts for both iPhones and iPads, offering them only with Deutsche Telekom contracts or SIM-free. The change affects only post-paid contracts: pre-paid SIMs remain available on Vodafone. expand full story

Deutsche Telekom Stories January 20, 2015

T-Mobile USA CEO responds to ‘unsustainable’ claim in typical Uncarrier fashion

What does T-Mobile US CEO John Legere have to say about comments from parent company Deutsche Telekom this week calling his “Uncarrier” approach unsustainable?

“Its total bullshit,” according to a brief response from Legere referring to comments made by Deutsche Telekom CEO Timotheus Höttges in an interview earlier this week.

According to Re/code, Höttges “admitted that T-Mobile’s current approach is not sustainable” during the interview: “The question is always the economics in the long term … and earning appropriate money,” Hoettges said. “You have to earn your money back at one point in time.”

Höttges also noted that he was “intrigued by the idea of having a combination with Sprint and being the ‘super-maverick’ in the market,” referring to T-Mobile’s plans for a merger with the company that fell through last year.

On sustainability, Höttges claimed T-Mobile’s aggressive discounts and Uncarrier approach would not work long-term as the company invests approximately $4-$5 billion each year to keep up with the other carriers.

Despite disagreements on sustainability, Höttges did briefly attempt to praise Legere’s work during the interview: “His management style will never be adaptable to Germany,”Hoettges said, although he added that Legere’s competitive nature and desire to win are very much in line with the company’s culture. “I like people being disruptive… I like people who are brave. He is very much fitting to our DNA, how we want to be, even if he is very American in his approach.”

Deutsche Telekom Stories June 26, 2014

Mac Otakara has posted a video it says is of the actual back of the 4.7-inch model of the iPhone 6, contrasting it with much simpler mockups.

While there’s no way to assess whether the part is genuine, it certainly looks convincing. The many mockups floating around are essentially featureless inside, but this appears to have the detail of the real thing. If it’s a hoax, it’s an extremely elaborate one …  expand full story

Deutsche Telekom Stories September 5, 2013

Samsung is so far the only company to announce an LTE-A compatible phone

Samsung is so far the only company to announce an LTE-A compatible phone

A statement by Deutsche Telekom is adding to speculation that at least the European model of the iPhone 5S may support the high-speed LTE-A standard (also known as LTE+). The prospect of the 5S supporting the faster version of LTE had first been suggested back in July.

In announcing that the carrier will be launching its high-speed LTE-A data service this month, offering speeds of up to 150MBit/s, the company said:

Samsung will offer an updated version of the Galaxy S4 with LTE +. Appropriate devices from other manufacturers will follow the end of September.

Given the timing, some are suggesting that one of the ‘other manufacturers’ may be Apple …  expand full story

Deutsche Telekom Stories November 29, 2012

Analyst: T-Mobile USA might announce arrival of iPhone next week

With T-Mobile Chief Operating Officer Jim Alling hinting that the iPhone was too expensive at a recent conference in Barcelona, it seemed like the carrier planned  to continue with its bring-your-own iPhone strategy for its ever-expanding iPhone-compatible 4G network. However, a note from Merrill Lynch analyst Scott Craig today claimed the carrier could announce a deal to carry the iPhone as early as next week. Fortune has the story:

Now Merrill Lynch’s Scott Craig is out with a note reporting that “speculation is heightening” that Deutsche Telecom (DT) will announce a deal to bring the iPhone to its U.S. subsidiary at next week’s analysts day (12/6-7).

Merrill Lynch’s Craig points out that cutting a deal with the fourth largest U.S. carrier would give Apple access to 98% of the U.S. post-paid market and 75% of the country’s total mobile subscribers.

“While this would be incrementally positive,” he writes, “any financial impact would be limited.” He estimates that a T-Mobile deal would add about 4 million iPhones to his current estimate of 179 million sold in calendar 2013, boosting Apple’s top line (revenue) by 1% and its bottom line (earnings per share) by 2%.

Deutsche Telekom Stories August 14, 2012

Much like in the weeks leading up to the iPhone 4S launch in early October 2011, European carriers are preparing for the expected Sept. 12 introduction of the new iPhone with pre-order tickets now available through various carriers. As noted by reports from German website iPhone-ticker.de, Deutsche Telekom will offer pre-order tickets to interested customers through its distribution partners starting today. The tickets will offer a first-come, first-serve basis for the new iPhone with express delivery of the device to ticket holders on the first available day. Carriers are clearly preparing for the launch of Apple’s next-gen iPhone. Not that we need additional verification, as the most recent reports once again confirm a Sept. 12 unveiling and add the device could actually be available for pre-order on the same day. Last year, Vodafone and other carriers quickly followed Deutsche Telekom by offering iPhone pre-order tickets.

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Deutsche Telekom Stories February 23, 2012

The nation’s fourth-largest wireless carrier T-Mobile USA just reported it lost 802,000 contract customers during the holiday quarter, causing revenues to dip 3.3-percent to $20.6 billion. For comparison, the company reported 186,000 net contract customer losses in the third quarter of 2011 and 251,000 in the year-ago quarter. The Deutsche Telekom-owned carrier put the blame for such a huge decline in customers and mindshare on Apple’s iPhone 4S that bypassed T-Mobile to launch last October on AT&T, Verizon Wireless, Sprint and regional carriers C Spire Wireless and Claro Puerto Rico, the largest Puerto Rican telecommunications services company.

A statement from Deutsche Telekom said:

For T-Mobile USA, the past year was characterized by significant challenges, particularly in the fourth quarter, following the market launch of the new Apple iPhone model by the three major national competitors in October. […] However, not carrying the iPhone led to a significant increase in contract deactivations in the fourth quarter of 2011. […] Sequentially, the decline in branded net contract customers was driven primarily by higher branded contract deactivations as a result of the launch of the iPhone 4S by three nationwide competitors in mid-October.

The Bellevue, Wash.-headquartered firm contemplated for far too long whether to invest big bucks into 4G LTE deployment, and it clung to a hopeful merger with AT&T to solve its capital investment issues. With that deal off the table now, the company is promising to launch 4G LTE service sometime next year, tapping $1.4 billion of its own investment, re-farmed frequencies, and extra spectrum acquired from AT&T.

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Deutsche Telekom Stories January 26, 2012

AT&T has a grudge with the Federal Communications Commission, and during the mobile carrier’s quarterly earnings call today, CEO Randall Stephenson criticized the FCC over spectrum availability and the bombed acquisition of T-Mobile USA, with him further claiming that AT&T’s spectrum crux could cause jacked prices against its highest data users.

The American Telephone and Telegraph Company, founded in 1876, once held a monopoly on wired phone service in the United States, but the U.S. Department of Justice broke up Alexander Graham Bell’s company into seven “Baby Bells” with an antitrust lawsuit that turned into a settlement in 1982.

Since then, the company has slowly reassembled. Six of those seven “Baby Bells” merged into two single companies: AT&T, Inc., (Ameritech, BellSouth, Pacific Telesis, and Southwestern Bell) and Verizon Communications, Inc., (NYNEX and Bell Atlantic). The acquisition of the fourth largest wireless service provider in the U.S., Deutsche Telekom AG’s T-Mobile USA, would have poised AT&T to gain a monopoly once again, but this time through its 3G GSM service in the U.S., while garnering the No. 1 spot in the U.S. wireless market. However, the FCC stepped in this time and dashed the company’s monopolizing hopes.

The FCC requested a formal administrative hearing into AT&T’s proposed $39 billion takeover of T-Mobile USA last fall, subsequently causing the U.S. carrier to withdraw the pending approval applications in November 2011. The decision rolled into a killed bid and garnered a $4 billion pretax charge on AT&T’s Q4 2011 accountancy sheet that includes a $3 billion default payment due to Deutsche Telekom over the deal’s non-completion and an additional $1 billion in spectrum value that AT&T would have to forgo.

AT&T CEO Stephenson released his frustrations concerning the debacle at the company’s Q4 2011 financial conference call today. He set his sights on the FCC and lambasted the agency while decrying it of choosing “winners” and “losers” in regards to approving and regulating deals…

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Deutsche Telekom Stories January 11, 2012

Update: Reports that T-Mobile knows Apple’s chipset roadmap are false I’ve confirmed with T-Mobile’s PR department.  Ray only said that Apple could choose to use Chips that are AWS compatible, which is obvious.

I had a few minutes this evening between Colbie Cailat songs at T-Mobile’s CES 2012 party to talk to CTO Neville Ray on what the future holds for T-Mobile since the AT&T merger is off. T-Mobile walked away with not only $3 billion but also some AWS spectrum from AT&T.

First, Ray is excited.  He talked like someone who has been imprisoned by the merger over the past year, unable to make any long term moves. T-Mobile is still evaluating its long-term options (like LTE) but there is a buzz in the air now.  While the parent company Deutsch Telekom gets the $3 billion payoff from AT&T, it seems that there will be big investment over the next few years in the T-Mobile USA subsidy.

On Dec. 19, T-Mobile’s official AT&T breakup release stated what —besides the $3 billion— T-Mobile would get:

As part of the break-up fee, T-Mobile USA will receive a large package of AWS mobile spectrum in 128 Cellular Market Areas (CMAs), including 12 of the top 20 markets (Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Washington, Boston, San Francisco, Phoenix, San Diego, Denver, Baltimore and Seattle).

The UMTS roaming agreement for the U.S. in T-Mobile USA’s favor has a term of over seven years and will allow the company to improve its footprint significantly among the U.S. population and offer its customers better broadband coverage for mobile communications services in the future. Population coverage will increase from 230 million potential customers at present to 280 million. As a result of the agreement with AT&T, coverage will be extended to many regions of the U.S. in which T-Mobile USA previously had neither its own high-speed mobile communications network nor the associated roaming agreements.

That spectrum will allow T-Mobile to light up HSPA+ radio frequency used by the iPhone’s 3G.

I asked Ray about the reports that claimed T-Mobile networks in the Northwest were already broadcasting 1900 MHz HSPA+.

Nevada, parts of Northern California and the Pacific Northwest are also seeing some pockets of 1900MHz spectrum refarming for HSPA+. There are other parts of the country T-Mobile can refarm the 1900MHz spectrum but, the focus is on the Pacific Northwest, Nevada, Utah and California for right now from what we’re told. We should emphasize and emphasize greatly that this post does not mean that all of the aforementioned areas are seeing this refarmed spectrum, just pockets inside those areas.

Ray said those networks were not officially lit up (perhaps some tower testing or AT&T roaming confusion happened).

Nevertheless, there is good news for those who want to use an iPhone on T-Mobile’s 3G network…

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Deutsche Telekom Stories September 8, 2011

TmoNews thinks it scooped a possible evidence that Apple will be announcing its next iPhone in about two weeks time. The site cites “a huge number of emails” they received, which apparently mention “that T-Mobile has called an “All Hands Day” meeting for September 24th for unknown reasons”. September 24 is a Saturday, ruling out the possibility of an Apple media event that day. It could be also just T-Mobile prepping for another product arrival, such as the Galaxy S II, or some non-Apple related marketing and sales initiative. Also, Boy Genius Report offers that the memo actually refers to a high-volume day, which does not compute since iPhone 5 is not expected to hit stores before October.

On the other hand, 9to5Mac heard that Apple could begin accepting pre-orders for the next iPhone as early as Friday, September 30. If T-Mobile USA gets the handset, as rumored, they would want to brief employees at least a week before pre-orders start. And T-Mobile holding a meeting on Saturday, September 24, could mean an Apple media event earlier that week, in which case invites should be sent out sometime in the next week or so. expand full story

Deutsche Telekom Stories September 5, 2011

We’ve received a word from several sources that GameStop will soon begin offering the entire lineup of Apple’s popular iOS mobile devices such as iPhones, iPods and iPads at their stores.  The announcement was made to dealers at an annual trade show in Las Vegas this past week. Also, as of this week, GameStop began accepting iOS device trade-ins for in-store credits.  From the sound of it, our take is GameStop is first doing trade-ins/used products before phasing in new ones, perhaps as Apple launches iPhone 5 in October (Deutsche Telekom in Germany is now quietly accepting pre-orders).

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