The end of an era
Bottom line: Newly minted T-Mobile CEO Mike Sievert said during an investor event this week that the company will start winding down the Sprint brand this summer. The Sprint name has been around for decades but as is common in the wireless industry, the brand will soon be set out to pasture.
Sievert said that on the consumer side, the plan was always to make the transition during the summer. Covid-19, however, prompted executives to push the timeframe back into mid-summer from early summer. “This is when we will essentially be advertising one flagship postpaid T-Mobile brand as well as operating a unified fleet of retail,” Sievert added.
The retail aspect is what ultimately made T-Mobile pump the brakes a bit, he noted.
T-Mobile wrapped up its merger with fourth-ranked Sprint on April 1 after clearing a number of regulatory hurdles. Upon closing, longtime CEO John Legere stepped down, passing the baton to Sievert to had previously served as chief operating officer.
We’re still waiting to see what Legere’s encore career consists of. Considering the stellar job he did with T-Mobile and the overall impact he had on the wireless industry, most any company would be fortunate to have him at the helm.
When asked about the competitive landscape, Sievert said he views T-Mobile as the insurgent. “That’s our mindset every day when we come to work. It’s how do we change the game and be able to rescue people from AT&T, Verizon and big cable. Nothing’s changed about that… we’re just a little bigger now.”
Big cable could indeed mix up the field in the wireless industry. Comcast launched its Xfinity Mobile service in 2017 and the T-Mobile / Sprint merger paved the way for Dish Network to try its hand at wireless.