According to an article on the Financial Times, SoftBank Mobile quietly changed the standard subscriber accounting procedure in October. Their ‘new method’ resulted in numbers which saved the company from having to announce a net loss of customers during their debut month. “The telecommunications group was able to report a net gain in subscribers only by extending the period for which it counts inactive users from six months to a year.. this allowed it to include prepaid subscribers who had not used their mobile phones for nearly 12 months. Japan’s other big mobile operators generally use three months as the cut-off period.”. We had speculated they would post a net loss in October — the TCA numbers for November will be released soon — Stay Tuned.
According to analytica1st.com the FT article goes on to say:
“.. what executives at Softbank did was to extend the period for which they counted inactive users from six months to a year. As a result, the October numbers were increased by 30,000-35,000. According to Financial Times, “without the change, Softbank’s reported net additions of 23,800 subscribers to 15,330,800 in October would have been replaced by a net loss of at least 5,000 subscribers, the first since May 2005, when Vodafone still owned the business.”