Sprint lures thousands of new customers after aggressive bid to pull them from rival carriers

Sprint is claiming some success in its very aggressive bid to lure customers away from rival carriers.

The wireless carrier said Thursday that it had 967,000 new customers during its third quarter. Of those, 30,000 were for lucrative contract-based wireless plans, up 20 percent from the same quarter a year ago, the company said.

Shares of Sprint Corp. jumped more than 7 percent before the opening bell.

Sprint made a grab for new customers last month, offering to cut whatever people were paying at Verizon or AT&T in half if they defected.

Sprint, based in Overland Park, Kansas, is the third largest cellphone carrier behind those two carriers. Sprint's other brands include Virgin Mobile, Boost Mobile and Assurance Wireless.