Verizon's (VZ - Get Report) CFO Fran Shammo downplayed the bullishness around the roll-out of Apple's (AAPL - Get Report) iPhone 7 on Thursday, but expressed confidence about the wireless giant's leading position in the industry.
Sprint (S - Get Report) had previously announced that iPhone 7 and iPhone 7+ pre-orders were up 375% year-over-year from 6S pre-orders, while T-Mobile US (TMUS - Get Report) had said iPhone 7 and 7+ pre-orders were up 4 times compared to that of the iPhone 6 and 6+ refresh in September 2014.
"Some of our competitors have made big announcements around the iPhone 7," Shammo said at the Goldman Sachs 25th Annual Communacopia Conference in New York on Thursday. He added that while the rollout and accompanying promotional deals some carriers are offering have stimulated the market, it remains to be seen how the iPhone orders will pan out once such deals end.
"I don't think it's going to be a '14 event," he further said, referring to the popular iPhone 6 upgrade to larger screens two years ago. "For us, this will have no impact on our margins especially for the third quarter."
Even as competition continues to ramp up among wireless carriers, Verizon is confident about its position in the sector, Shammo said.
"We will continue to be the premium provider in the industry," he said. The Goldman Sachs conference is Shammo's last investor conference as Verizon's CFO before he retires at the end of the year. Matt Ellis, senior vice president and CFO of operations finance, will succeed Shammo. Ellis currently heads up the telco's wireless and wireline business divisions.
Touting Verizon's growth initiatives, Shammo shed light on how Verizon has been boosting its wireless business while simultaneously expanding footprint in new, fast-growing markets.
"We're protecting our [customer] base. We're very satisfied right now," he said.
The wireless landscape has emerged as an intense battlefield with the two largest providers, Verizon and AT&T (T - Get Report) , losing market share to second-tier providers T-Mobile and Sprint, which have promoted low prices and unlimited usage plans.
"We will just play this out," Shammo further said. "I'm dealing with the IoT, Smart City and Telematics world. They're still talking about how great their network is in LTE," he further said of his competitors.
Meanwhile, 2016 has been a big year for Verizon.
The telco completed its $10.54 billion sale of noncore wireline operations to Frontier Communications (FTR - Get Report) while investing heavily in new growth areas including digital media and telematics. Verizon is paying $4.83 billion for the core assets of Yahoo! in order to merge it with AOL and further boost its presence mobile and video.
Elsewhere, the telco has also been expanding its footprint in telematics having purchased privately held Telogis for an undisclosed sum and Fleetmatics Group (FLTX) for $2.4 billion.
Meanwhile, Verizon is said to be in advanced talks to potentially acquire mobile video startup site Vessel, and Yahoo! was expected on Thursday to confirm a data breach of its service that has compromised several hundred million user accounts, according to Recode. The data breach could present difficulties for Verizon.
Verizon also reached an agreement with its labor union after a nearly seven-week strike this summer, and is grappling with making the switch to a non-subsidy model for selling cellphones.
"Entering into 2016, we said this would be a transformational year for us and it has been," Shammo said, adding Verizon will be focused on integrating the digital media assets and generating synergy in the near term.
Speaking of its telematics assets, Shammo highlighted his bullishness for the connected car sector.
"From the market share perspective, no one really owns the market at this point," he said, adding that telematics is among the most mature categories of IoT.
Verizon entered the space in 2012 when it acquired Hughes Telematics for $612 million.
"Hughes had a great platform. Telogis -- everybody would agree because everybody was bidding on it -- has a state of art ... business," Shammo said, adding that its latest acquisition Fleetmatics will bring value, expertise and scale. "We believe we can make inroads."
Shares of Verizon were up about 0.6% Thursday morning to $52.16. The stock is up about 13% year-to-date.