United States Cellular Corporation
), has announced the launch of HTC One V, and thus became the
second telecom carrier in the U.S. to offer the smartphone. We
believe this is an attempt by the company to diversify its
smartphone portfolio. The HTC One V will be available online and
the company's own store.
The smartphone is strategically priced at $129.99 dollar with a
$100 mail-in-rebate and is $70 less than what rival
) prepaid division Virgin Mobile is offering. Benefits include
features like new devices being offered without the hassles of
re-signing the contract and a point based reward system which is
the first of its kind in this industry. However, a new customer
will have to sign a two-year contract and have to pay the
HTC One V is one of the few phones in US Cellular's stable that
) new android (Ice-Cream Sandwich) platform.
The phone is launched to keep pace with the increasing demand
for newer versions of smartphones. Additionally, the phone will
target customers who want to stick to a single device for a
considerable span of time. Although the company is slated to launch
the very popular Samsung SIII for its high-end customers, we
believe that this phone will attract customers who are looking for
a good smartphone at a decent price
The current Zacks Consensus Estimate for United Cellular is
pegged at 69 cents for the second quarter with a growth rate
estimate of (10.13%). For 2012 and 2013, the Zacks Consensus
Estimates stands at $2.04 and $1.78 with growth rate of (1.29%) and
We maintain our long-term Neutral recommendation for United
States Cellular Corporation. Currently, USM has a Zacks #3 Rank,
implying a short-term Hold rating on the stock.
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