Verizon's 1.1 million Q2 net wireless subscribers fueled by tablet connections

Verizon's second quarter showed how the telecom giant is fending off price competition from the likes of T-Mobile. Tablet additions are a key focus.

Verizon's second quarter earnings were better than expected, revenue was light and tablets accounted for most of the wireless postpaid additions.

The telecom giant, which recently closed the acquisition of AOL, reported second quarter earnings of $1.04 a share on revenue of $32.2 billion, up 2.4 percent from a year ago.

Wall Street was looking for second quarter earnings of $1 a share on revenue of $32.45 billion.

More importantly, analysts were looking to see how Verizon was responding to competition from T-Mobile. In the first quarter, Verizon took a hit from T-Mobile's Uncarrier promotions.

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In the second quarter, Verizon added 1.1 million new wireless subscribers, down 21 percent from a year ago. Analysts were looking for about 1.4 million. Nevertheless, Verizon's wireless postpaid additions were twice the net reported in the first quarter.

Verizon said it added 852,000 net tablet connections and 321,000 net phones. 4G devices are 73 percent of the retail postpaid base.

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At the end of the second quarter, Verizon had 109.5 million retail connections with 103.7 million postpaid. Those figures don't include wholesale or Internet of things connections.

Verizon said its postpaid churn rate in the second quarter was 0.90.

On the wireline front, Verizon added 72,000 new FiOS Internet connections and 26,000 FiOS video connections. Verizon did say demand for its custom TV packages has been high.

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