According to the NPD Group, 30% of iPhone purchasers (and corresponding AT&T wireless subs) from June to August 2008 churned from other wireless providers. Nearly half of those new AT&T wireless subs came from Verizon Wireless, 24% from T-Mobile, and 19% from Sprint. So by NPD’s estimate, just under one-third of new AT&T wireless subs came to them as a direct result of the iPhone, and Verizon Wireless felt the most iPhone pain.
Lucky for Verizon, Sprint, on average, is losing 1 million subs per quarter in 2008, many of whom are fleeing to Verizon. So while Verizon lost a fair number of subs to AT&T and the iPhone, they made up for it by welcoming all those disgruntled Sprint customers. Upcoming third quarter numbers will provide a more revealing view of this competitive battle. So far, Verizon has fared quite well next to the iPhone challenge (thanks in part to the aforementioned Sprint). But the third quarter will be the first full quarter of the iPhone 3G bonanza. I’ve seen estimates that suggest 7 million+ total iPhone sales in the 3Q08 alone. All of those sales won’t be AT&T customers, but the majority will. Look for a blowout wireless quarter for AT&T. Now, will Sprint continue to deliver for Verizon?