When Apple (AAPL) introduced iPhone 6 models, it set off the traditional scramble by wireless carriers to poach one another’s customers. Exciting new phones are one of the best ways for carriers to lure people, and this year has been especially hectic. The new iPhones were seen as a particularly big upgrade, all four carriers were planning major launches for the first time, and it is now easier than ever for customers to switch carriers without facing a financial penalty.
T-Mobile’s (TMUS) latest quarterly report make it pretty clear who won. The company posted the best subscriber growth in its history, adding 1.4 million postpaid customers to the T-Mobile brand in the quarter. In October, the first full month of iPhone sales, 2.4 people left a competitor to join T-Mobile for every single T-Mobile defector. The biggest haul came from Sprint (S), the second member of the wireless industry’s junior varsity tier, which sent 2.5 customers to T-Mobile for each T-Mobile convert it won. T-Mobile also lured more than 2.2 customers from AT&T(T) and Verizon (VZ) for each one it lost.
“There’s a fallacy in the the industry that AT&T and Verizon are going to sit where they are, and Sprint and T-Mobile are going to beat one another over the head,” said John Legere, T-Mobile’s chief executive officer, during a call with investors on Tuesday. The only reason for modesty around the iPhone launch, he said, was the expectation that T-Mobile would continue to have trouble keeping the iPhone in stock through November. The larger iPhone 6 Plus will face supply constraints even longer.
Many people expected T-Mobile to come out ahead this fall. It has been outpacing its competitors ever since it launched its “Uncarrier” campaign, which seeks to overturn such fixtures of the wireless industry as two-year contracts. It stands to reason that a network with fewer iPhone subscribers has more to gain and less to lose than networks with more of them.
But the concern with T-Mobile hasn’t been about its ability to add customers. The upstart carrier has made sacrifices to win the legions of converts, and Legere is fighting against the assumption that T-Mobile and Sprint are basically doing the same thing: undercutting bigger competitors on price. That has been Sprint’s explicit strategy, and it’s probably necessary because the company openly admits that its network lags behind those of AT&T and Verizon. T-Mobile has also sacrificed revenue in aggressive pursuit of customers, but when he talks to investors Legere insists at length that T-Mobile is charging customers more than ever. That’s a slightly awkward position for a man who has tailored his public persona as the foul-mouthed voice of the common man fighting against faceless phone companies.
In fact, T-Mobile charged more than ever in the past quarter. The average monthly bill for its customers was $49.84, up slightly from a year before. Promotions related to the holiday season and the new iPhone will lower prices for the rest of the year, but T-Mobile says they will begin rising again in January.
It’s been a long time coming, but Microsoft is officially phasing out the Nokia brand name.
A post on Nokia France’s Facebook page says that the account will soon change its name to “Microsoft Lumia.” Nokia France’s Twitter account linked to the post as well, and Microsoft confirmed to The Verge that other countries will follow the same rebranding steps. Microsoft acquired Nokia’s device business in April for $7 billion.
Even before the switch, the Nokia brand had been fading away. Several of the company’s Windows Phone Store apps, such as Treasure Tag and App Social, have dropped Nokia from their names in recent months. Some Nokia websites have also been pointing people to Microsoft, and Microsoft Mobile is now the official name for Nokia’s former device business.
Still, Microsoft was using the Nokia name in actual products as recently as last month, when it announced the Nokia Lumia 730 and 830. Both phones have “Nokia” written on the front bezel, but they could be the last handsets to do so as Microsoft puts the name change into effect.
Why this matters: Microsoft clearly feels the need to simplify its smartphone branding, and the Nokia brand is just one casualty. The company has also stopped using “Windows Phone” in its advertising, instead favoring just “Windows” even before merging the two operating systems in Windows 10. Dropping the Nokia brand may also be a case of clearing up confusion, given that Nokia’s networking, mapping and licensing businessesstill exist as a separate company.
New pictures of alleged iPhone 6 cases show the potential size differences between the iPhone 5s and the iPhone 6 variants that are expected to replace it later on this year.
Apple still isn’t ready to talk about a new iPhone but that doesn’t mean that rumors haven’t been talking for it. iPhone 6 rumors have been rampant in 2014 with leaks and rumors detailing everything from the alleged iPhone 6 release date to its design to its potential screen sizes. Rumors suggest that Apple will be releasing two new iPhone models with two new screen sizes sometime later this year.
iPhone 6 rumors have centered around two new models including a 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and a 5.5-inch iPhone 6 that is sometimes referred to as iPhone Air. The measurements haven’t been confirmed but iPhone 6 rumors have repeatedly outed these two dimensions as the screen sizes of the next two iPhones.
With a size change all but confirmed for the iPhone, consumers are starting to wonder how big the iPhone 6 might be. We’ve seen a number of leaks showcase the supposed iPhone 6 dimensions next to devices like the Samsung Galaxy S5 and HTC One M8 and now we’re getting another look at how the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and 5.5-inch iPhone 6 might compare to the current iPhone 5s.
These cases show the possible size differences between the iPhone 5s and iPhone 6.
A new listing spotted on e-commerce site Alibaba appears to show alleged iPhone 6 cases next to the 4-inch iPhone 4s. In the photos, we see what appears to be a case for the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and a case for the larger 5.5-inch model. The size difference between the iPhone 5s and the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 case is noticeable but subtle.
However, the size difference between the case for the larger iPhone, the smaller iPhone 6 and the iPhone 5s is striking. The larger case is much bigger than the 4.7-inch model and it towers over the 4-inch iPhone 5s. We’ve seen this difference in size before but these photos offer a clear glimpse at the potential size differences between the three iPhones.
These cases match up with previous iPhone 6 design leaks that point to a redesign complete with new button placement and rounded corners that resemble the look of the iPod touch. The iPhone 6 design is rumored to be extremely thin, perhaps 7mm, and these cases appear to have been made from a thin mold.
While these cases line up with just about every iPhone 6 design rumor that’s emerged in the past two months, there is still no guarantee that these cases resemble the final iPhone 6 design.
iPhone 6 rumors continue to firm up in the days after Apple’s WWDC 2014 conference in San Francisco. In the past week, we’ve seen iPhone 6 release date rumors continue to point to an arrival this fall alongside Apple’s iOS 8 update which is scheduled to be released from the beta program later this year.
Rumors continue to point to an arrival in September though reports continue to peg the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 release for later in the year, perhaps in September or October. Specific release dates are not yet known though September 19th is being thrown around by at least one international carrier. September 19th is the third Friday in September and Apple typically releases its iPhone on Friday.
We’ve also seen iPhone 6 rumors point to a number of potential features including larger higher resolution displays, a brand new A8 64-bit processor, a redesign, a new camera with optical image stabilization, NFC, wireless charging, and more. The iPhone 6 is said to still be comprised of moving parts which means that some rumored iPhone 6 features may not make the final cut.
The iPhone 6 is expected to be joined by a number of new Apple products including the new iWatch, new iPads and perhaps, new Mac hardware to support the company’s OS X Yosemite roll out.
Earlier this week, Foxconn released a press release confirming that it will be working on the new iPhone 6 smartphones from Apple. More importantly, it confirmed the half year-long rumor that the upcoming iPhone will get bigger screens, specifically 4.7 inches and 5.5 inches long.
Now, that we already know that Apple is really developing ‘gigantic’ smartphones compared to the iPhones previously and currently available in the market, can it stand the heat?
Today, the Android heavyweights rule the big smartphone competition with phone makers such as Samsung, HTC, LG and Sony releasing bigger and bigger smartphones for the past previous years. Remember when everyone thought that the original Galaxy Note smartphone was ridiculously big? That’s not the case now, and in fact smartphones today are much bigger than Galaxy Note pioneer.
Apple is well praised as far as display goes in its past iPhones, particularly due to the Retina display the company uses. However, previous reports from DigiTimes and other alleged insiders claim that Apple will soon ditch the Retina in favor of higher resolution options.
This could be due to the fact that the screen sizes of its upcoming iPhones are too big for Retina or could add a hefty amount to the phone’s production cost per unit. However, another report from 9to5mac claims that the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 would only get 1,704 x 960 resolution.
Other rumors also claim that the new iPhone would get a thinner display thanks to the on-cell touch technology which would be implemented on the smartphone. Other alleged specs of the new Apple phone include a 64-bit supported A8 chip, the new iOS 8 which was announced at the WWDC in San Francisco, and an improved Touch ID home button.
A report by The Week also claims that the battery of the new iPhone will be more power efficient which in turn would let the smartphone last for a couple more hours.
Of course, all of these rumors are unconfirmed unless we hear from Apple itself.