Verizon reported wireless margins of 41.4%, down from 50% in the third quarter and 42.2% in the year-ago quarter, but the parent, Verizon Communications still managed a $4.23 billion loss that stemmed largely from massive charges from its pension plan, debt-related costs and storm damage.
Wireless revenue rose 9.5% to $20 billion in the quarter. Total churn, or customers who cancel services, was 0.95%, compared with 0.94% a year ago and 0.91% in the prior quarter.
Verizon Wireless Operational Highlights:
- At the end of 2012, the company had 98.2 million retail connections, a 6.6 percent increase year over year — including 92.5 million retail postpaid connections.
- At year-end 2012, smartphones accounted for more than 58 percent of the Verizon Wireless retail postpaid customer phone base, up from 53 percent at the end of third-quarter 2012.
- Verizon activated 7.3 LTE devices in three months and sold 6.2 million iPhones. Half of those iPhones were Apple’s newest LTE-enabled model.
- Verizon Wireless continued to roll out its 4G LTE mobile broadband network, the largest 4G LTE network in the U.S. As of today (Jan. 22), Verizon Wireless 4G LTE service is available to more than 273 million people — close to 89 percent of the population — in 476 markets across the U.S.
- In the fourth quarter, Verizon Wireless launched eight 4G LTE smartphones: the DROID RAZR HD and DROID RAZR MAXX HD by Motorola; Windows Phone 8X by HTC; Nokia Lumia 822; Samsung Galaxy Note II; Spectrum 2 by LG; Samsung Galaxy Stratosphere II; and the DROID DNA by HTC. In addition, Verizon Wireless launched three tablets in the quarter: the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, Apple iPad with Retina display and Apple iPad mini.
Verizon Wireless said Tuesday that about 50% of its total wireless data traffic is now going over the LTE network.