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It's gotta hurt being the only major U.S. carrier without the iPhone, and the proof of this dilemma is certainly being shown in T-Mobile USA's second-quarter, during which time more than half a million subscribers jumped ship for greener pastures.
T-Mobile USA has announced second-quarter 2012 financial results and it's a good news/bad news kind of scenario -- but no matter how you slice it, it's gotta stink to be the only major U.S. carrier without the iPhone.
The bad news is the company shed 557,000 customers on the more lucrative postpaid (contract) plans. That pales dramatically in comparison to the 187,000 new customers the carrier added in the first quarter, and it's almost four times the number of postpaid customers it lost in Q2 2011.
The only bright spot in this grim news is that the company gained back 227,000 customers on the prepaid side of the business, which undoubtedly includes a fair number of unlocked iPhones, despite those users being stuck on slower 2G EDGE data speeds.
All in all, T-Mobile USA's Q2 net income is actually up 3.5 percent over the previous quarter, although the number dipped by 2.4 percent from the same quarter last year. Deducting the prepaid gains from the postpaid losses, the company would up with a net loss of only 205,000 customers.
The better news for T-Mobile customers is the company's 4G LTE plans are marching onward, and should roll out next year. The magenta carrier also plans to add prepaid service at 8,700 more third-party stores during Q3, so the company clearly hopes to capitalize on its popularity as a GSM safe haven from AT&T.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter