Friday, February 7, 2014

T-Mobile's Consumer-Friendly Policies Putting Pressure On Rivals

By Jeff Bailey

If T-Mobile (TMUS) is half as disruptive to Verizon (VZ) and AT&T (T) in the mobile phone business as recent articles in the New York Times and Bloomberg Businessweek suggest, those larger carriers could be in trouble.

T-Mobile's self-promoting CEO John Legere is delighting in introducing consumer-friendly policies that could gain his company considerable market share, or at least force his larger rivals to match his terms to keep their customers.

VZ Market Cap Chart

VZ Market Cap data by YCharts

Remember, however, trashing the other guy's profits doesn't assure you of any profits. Sometimes, the price cutter in an industry simply screws it up for everyone, himself included. Ask Jeff Bezos at Amazon (AMZN), a company we refer to at YCharts as the Suicide Bomber of Retail. Yes, Amazon ran Borders out of business and is trashing the results of Barnes & Noble (BKS) and Best Buy (BBY), but the online retailer has little in the way of profits to show for its accomplishments.

AMZN Revenue (TTM) Chart

AMZN Revenue (TTM) data by YCharts

Investors don't seem to mind. They either think Amazon will find a way to turn huge profits, or they're so dazzled by its fabulous and disruptive service they aren't thinking at all.

AMZN Chart

AMZN data by YCharts

Legere could become the guy who changed the mobile telecom industry but didn't build a fabulous fortune doing so. But there's no doubt consumers could benefit hugely. Everyone, it seems, hates their mobile provider.

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Jeff Bailey, The editor of YCharts, is a former reporter, editor and columnist at the Wall Street Journal and New York Times. He can be reached at Read the RIABiz profile of YCharts. You can also request a demonstration of YCharts Platinum.

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