The U.S. wireless industry has been in the news for a while not only for the much-publicized race to implement 5G networks, but also for their ramped up efforts towards offering mobile video services, bolstered by T-Mobile's acquisition of DirecTV not too long ago. Carriers have also been actively taking part in FCC's auctions and as such, need the best men at the top to drive their growth in a fiercely competitive market. Being the faces of their respective carriers, these men also benefit from fat paycheques that match their efforts. Fierce Wireless recently looked at at how much the top executives in the wireless industry make and if the rest rival those at Google and Apple.
Looking at the top 10 list, the top three positions are being comfortably held by executives at Google including CEO Sundar Pichai who takes home a $100 million in annual compensation, former CFO/advisor Patrick Pichette and CFO Ruth Porat. Among top executives at wireless carriers, Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure bagged the fourth place with an annual take-home compensation of $26,965,004 million, followed by AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson who made $25,145,914. While executives at Verizon and T-Mobile were not listed, the rest of the positions were taken up by top executives at Apple. However, Apple CEO Tim Cook, who takes home a meagre $10 million in total annual compensation, failed to make the list. Satya Nadella and Steve Mollenkopf, CEOs at Microsoft and Qualcomm, respectively, are featured in the top ten list for 2014, their compensations were around the same range as Tim Cook's in 2015.
Among other top paid executives in the wireless industry is Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam who made $18.3 million in 2015, but was still a long way off from making it to the top ten list. Given how richly Google rewards its finance directors followed by Apple, it seems unlikely that wireless carrier CEOs will break into the top ten in large numbers in the near future. However, if carriers do implement 5G capabilities by 2020, diversify to streaming services, invest in a number of IoT technologies and expand their user base in the coming years, their CEOs will surely have a lot to cheer about.