The bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend isn't just affecting corporate IT departments – it appears to be having an impact on wireless operators, too.
The shift away from employer-provided BlackBerry devices toward employee-owned smartphones like the iPhone has prompted Sprint to restructure its business and consumer sales units, according to a memo from CEO Dan Hesse leaked to Reuters after the close of the stock market on Friday.
"As the wireless market has evolved, the lines between consumers and businesses have blurred," Hesse said.
A Sprint spokesman said the changes were about "simplifying" Sprint's business. No major layoffs are planned as part of the restructuring. "These moves are about simplifying the business to reflect the changing marketplace; it doesn't mean store closings or other major actions," he said.
Four executives will leave Sprint as a result of the reorganization. Consumer services chief Bob Johnson, consumer marketing head John Carney, M2M executive Danny Bowman and corporate development office Chris Rogers are leaving the company.
Sprint wholesale chief Matt Carter will head the M2M business, and Paget Alves will add consumer sales to his responsibilities as head of Sprint's sales to enterprise customers. Chief marketing officer Bill Malloy will handle marketing for both the consumer sales and enterprise divisions.
The executive shakeup comes amid Sprint's $5 billion effort to upgrade its aging 3G network and deploy LTE to help it better compete with AT&T and Verizon Wireless. Sprint's first 10 LTE markets are set to light up before the middle of this year, including Atlanta, Dallas, San Antonio and Houston.