AT&T reports strong Q3 net adds, strong smartphone sales

AT&T saw strong gains across its businesses. The postpaid net phone additions in the third quarter were AT&T's strongest showing in 10 years.

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AT&T reported strong third quarter earnings as it added 928,000 postpaid phone net additions and closed in on 70 million HBO Max/HBO subscribers.

The wireless giant reported non-GAAP third quarter earnings of 87 cents a share (82 cents a share GAAP) on revenue of $39.9 billion.

Wall Street was expecting AT&T to report third quarter non-GAAP earnings of 78 cents a share on revenue of $39.14 billion.

AT&T saw strong gains across its businesses. The postpaid net phone additions in the third quarter were AT&T's strongest showing in 10 years. AT&T also added 289,000 AT&T Fiber accounts. HBO Max and HBO subscribers were up 12.5 million from a year ago to end the quarter at 69.4 million.

The results come a day after Verizon reported strong results

By the numbers:

  • AT&T added 1,218,000 postpaid net additions in the third quarter as well as 249,000 prepaid phone ads and 928,000 postpaid phone net ads.
  • AT&T's mobility unit reported revenue growth of 7% in the third quarter to $19.1 billion and operating income of $6 billion.
  • AT&T's equipment revenue was $4.6 billion, up 15%, due to strong smartphone sales.
  • AT&T Fiber added 289,000 net customers and broadband revenue was up 7.6% in the third quarter from a year ago.
  • WarnerMedia revenue in the third quarter was $8.4 billion, up 14.2% from a year ago.

As for the outlook, AT&T said adjusted earnings for 2021 will be at the high end of its low to mid-single digit growth range. HBO Max/HBO subscribers will be at the higher end of the company's 70 million to 73 million target.