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T-Mobile: 15% of branded smartphone sales were iPhones

The carrier faced significant supply constraints for the new iPhones, which is likely why its iPhone sales were far short of its competitors.


T-Mobile, more than any other carrier, has faced significant supply issues with the iPhone.

That's likely why its iPhone sales were far short of its competitors, despite posting strong customer gains. Chief Marketing Officer Mike Sievert disclosed Tuesday on an analyst conference call that iPhone sales for its T-Mobile brand represented roughly 15 percent of its T-Mobile branded smartphone sales in the third quarter.

T-Mobile sold 5.6 million smartphones in total, but that includes sales of smartphones for its prepaid MetroPCS brand. Thus, it's unclear exactly how many iPhones that comes out to, and T-Mobile declined to provide a specific figure.

Still, the total would be significantly lower than the 3.9 million iPhones sold by Verizon and the 1.4 million iPhones sold by Sprint.

Sievert noted that supply was short for the iPhone 5S, but touted the diverse mix of smartphones sold in the period. The iPhone sales figure would include both new and older models.

Corrected at 7:08 a.m. PT: The initial story calculated 840,000 iPhones sold. But T-Mobile actually said that iPhone sales accounted for 15 percent of T-Mobile branded smartphones sold, without providing a specific number for the latter, thus making iPhone sales a smaller but fuzzier number.