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AT&T grows wireless, fiber subscribers during Q1 2023

"The industry continues to grow," the company's chief financial officer affirmed.

"The industry continues to grow," the company's chief financial officer affirmed.

An AT&T retail store.
An AT&T retail store. (Handout photo courtesy AT&T, Graphic by The Desk)

AT&T generated more than $30.1 billion in revenue during the first quarter of 2023, spurred in part by the addition of more than 400,000 postpaid wireless accounts and more than 272,000 fiber Internet customers, the company revealed on Thursday.

Its revenue grew by more than 1.4 percent compared to the $29.7 billion the company took in during the same quarter last year. Operating expenses were around $24.1 billion, propelled in large part by a continued rollout of its fifth-generation (5G) wireless phone and data service along with an accelerated build out of fiber lines in key markets.

The bulk of AT&T’s revenue this quarter came from its wireless service, which generated more than $20.6 billion in come. Executives attributed this to “higher service revenues,” which include customer payments for prepaid and postpaid wireless service (to include service offered under the Cricket prepaid brand) and certain other fees.

The company’s average revenue per user for AT&T postpaid service was $55.05 for the quarter, up 2.0 percent compared to 2022.

“The industry continues to grow coming off of two really strong years of growth,” Pascal Desroches, AT&T’s chief financial officer, said in an interview with Yahoo Finance on Thursday. “Not only are we growing subscribers, the thing to keep in mind is that you’re also seeing the quality of those subscribers come through, where we have among the highest ARPU in the industry as well as the lowest churn.”

Overall, AT&T said it has more than 70 million postpaid wireless phone subscribers, up from 67.5 million subscribers reported in 2022 (some customers have multiple lines of service on a single account). Its fiber subscriber customer base grew to 7.5 million, up from 6.3 million last year.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).