AT&T reported 2Q 2021 results today and AT&T Fiber results were a big part of the narrative. AT&T now counts 5.4 million fiber subscribers, second only to Verizon, who now has 6.4 million fiber subscribers.
AT&T Fiber gained 246K customers in 2Q 2021. The company is just shy of adding 500K fiber customers in the first half of the year, and executives on today’s call offered guidance of over 1 million new fiber customers for all of calendar year 2021.
One of the best metrics associated with this fiber growth for AT&T is the number of new customers fiber is driving for the company. Nearly 80% of net fiber customer adds are new customers to AT&T. That’s helping drive revenue and EBIDTA performance for its consumer wireline business unit.
“We’ve reached a major inflection point in our consumer wireline business,” said AT&T CFO Pascal Desroches on today’s earnings call. “Broadband revenue growth now surpasses legacy declines. We expect broadband revenues to continue to outpace legacy declines.”
The company reported broadband revenues were up 8.3% with ARPU growth of 6.1%. AT&T fiber penetration is now pegged at 36%, up 16% from a year ago. AT&T has a lot of runway left, considering it counts over 14 million total broadband subscribers. Fiber customers only make up about 38% of that total.
The company has previously announced plans to step up its fiber investment. At an investor conference earlier this year, the company said it plans to extend AT&T Fiber to an additional 3 million locations in 2021.
“We are currently deploying some of the early stages of our next 3 million build that we’ve disclosed for this year,” said Jeff McElfresh, CEO of AT&T Communications on today’s call. “As we cited earlier at analyst day, the bulk of that inventory is going to come on line towards the back half of the year, so my expectations are that our net add performance takes a step up as that inventory comes on line.”