Boosted by growth in long-distance and high-speed data customers, BellSouth reported earnings of $939 million, or 51 cents a share, before the markets opened Monday morning.
Analysts had predicted 50 cents.
BellSouth (NYSE: BLS) had total revenues of $5.1 billion, the same as a year ago, but increased earnings by 2 cents a share.
The stock price dropped 81 cents, to $25.09, in pre-market trading.
BellSouth added 535,000 long distance customers, increasing its total to 5.1 million, plus another 120,000 digital subscriber line users, upping that total to 1.7 million.
However, BellSouth also reported a drop of 3.7 percent in total user lines to 21.8 million.