Sprint Won't Profit on iPhone Until 2015

But hey, company is losing less money than it has in years
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 27, 2011 9:25 AM CDT
A man uses a cell phone as he passes a Sprint store, Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2010 in New York. Sprint Nextel Corp. on Wednesday reported its first quarterly revenue increase in three years.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

(Newser) – Sprint’s latest earnings reveal just how pricey its deal to get the iPhone was—and the numbers aren’t pretty. Spring is staring down a $2.2 billion cash shortfall next year, and will come up short by $5.2 billion the year after as it pays for the millions of iPhones it has ordered, and the deal isn’t expected to actually turn a profit until at least 2015, the Wall Street Journal reports.

At the same time, Sprint is going to have to dole out around $5 billion to upgrade its network to a 4G standard similar to AT&T and Verizon. Still, the news wasn’t all bad: Sprint added 1.3 million new subscribers in the quarter, and posted its smallest quarterly loss—$301 million—in four years, the AP reports. Revenue was up 2.2%.

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