I tend to rag on Sprint a ton, and I think in a way it’s justified. They were long the stale bread of the mobile world, and lately have started to grow mold. Their customer service is reprehensible, and their service isn’t nearly as strong as their two largest competitors, AT&T and Verizon. Even after they hired a new CEO, Dan Hesse, they still didn’t see much improvement. In fact, their stock is down upon news of staff cuts and customer losses, the loss of executives, and a class action suit. Clearly, Sprint needs to make a splash in order to come back onto the main stage. And this isn’t going to be a series of baby steps. The company really can’t afford that right now. They’re losing money and losing subscribers. So they have to get aggressive and find a way to attract new customers. But Hesse is taking steps. He even has his own “war room”:
You’ll get no argument from Hesse. Shortly after taking the helm, he set up a war room in an adjoining office. White boards were installed along with blackout shades, allowing Hesse to freely jot down his thoughts but still keep them secret, if necessary. Hesse has the only electronic key to the room, which is off-limits to everybody – including the cleaning crew – unless Hesse is present.
This room has already led to the decisions to cut staff and cut officers. What will it lead to next? How about unlimited calling? No, that hasn’t been announced yet. But the company certainly is considering the possibility. They’re seeing the success created by Boost Mobile, their wholly owned subsidiary, and their Boost Unlimited plan. Clearly, this is something that could work from a postpaid perspective. And it would certainly shake up the wireless world. So why not give it a shot? (Yes, there are plenty of risks involved, and failure here could mean failure for the company overall.) Hesse has shaken up the wireless world before. As CEO of AT&T Wireless — before the Cingular/SBC merger — he basically introduced nationwide cellular service by offering 600 minutes for $90 per month with no roaming or long distance fees. There’s plenty more in this USA Today/Yahoo News article, including WiMax issues and the speculation of a takeover bid. [Yahoo! News]