Wireless Gains Lift Verizon; Early Upgrade Plan Coming

Verizon Shares are Up; And New “Early Upgrade” Plan Coming.

This could be good news for those of us who use Verizon for our smartphones…

Wireless Gains Lift Verizon; Early Upgrade Plan Coming
Verizon’s second-quarter revenues fell in line with analyst expectations on Thursday, as the communications company added another 1 million connections to its wireless service.

The company finished with an earnings per share of 73 cents, better than what Wall Street anticipated. Revenue reached $29.8 billion, up 4.3% from the same time last year.

Of those 1 million wireless connections, 941,000 were the standard retail postpaid accounts with two-year contracts. Verizon says 36% of their retail postpaid accounts on a Share Everything Plan, which allows multiple users to share data on one account. That’s up from 30% the previous quarter.

“Having posted double-digit earnings growth in five of the last six quarters, we are focused on continuing to provide the best portfolio of products on the most reliable networks,” says Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam in a statement.

In June, the company says it “substantially completed deployment” of its 4G LTE high-speed network, which covers 99% of its 3G coverage area.

Interest in Verizon’s FiOS Internet network is also on the rise. The company says the number of connections to their Internet service rose 12%.

Shares of Verizon are down 0.55% in early morning trading.

Verizon chief financial officer, Fran Shammo, told analysts on a conference call that the company would introduce announce an early device upgrade plan called “Edge,” but did not give any details on how it would work or when it would be launched.

“We have a lot of customers in the technology edge that want to upgrade sooner than they would under our historical, legacy, subsidy model, if you will. And we have other customers who don’t want to pay upfront for the large cost of the phone,” Shammo said.

New York-based phone company Verizon Communications owns 55 percent of Verizon Wireless, which means that only that percentage of its profits flow to its bottom line. The rest goes to joint venture partner Vodafone Group PLC, a British cellphone company with wide-ranging international interests.

Verizon Communications has a long-standing interest in buying Vodafone out of Verizon Wireless, and analysts expect a deal could be reached later this year.

Article by Brett Molina, USA Today; Contributing: Associated Press