Both Sprint and AT&T are expected to deploy LTE on thousands of additional cell tower sites, including sites gained through acquisitions and subsequently repurposed, which will lift the bottom lines of independent tower companies, according to a new report from Moody's Investors Service.
In the second quarter of 2013, the industry grew by 335,000 subscribers, which is the lowest subscriber-add number this millennium. A significant reason for the low growth is that approximately 1 million Lifeline connections had to be disconnected because the carriers were unable to verify eligibility. The industry make-up also changed considerably in Q2.
U.S. wireless carriers added the lowest number of net new subscribers on record--139,000--in the second quarter, owing in large part to Sprint's shutdown of its Nextel iDEN network, according to a new report from Chetan Sharma Consulting.
After years of talking about mergers and acquisitions, the nation's top wireless carriers got down to business during the second quarter of this year, with T-Mobile US working to integrate its purchase of MetroPCS and Sprint closing on its purchase of Clearwire and netting an investment from Japan's SoftBank. AT&T also announced the purchase of Leap Wireless. What does this all mean?
C Spire Wireless recently purchased PCS spectrum from Leap Wireless, an indication that it continues to beef up its coverage in its core markets even as regional wireless carriers continue to fade from the industry.
Leap Wireless CFO Perley McBride said Leap is not required to purchase additional iPhones from Apple to meet its first year commitment to the company. On Leap's second-quarter earnings conference call, McBride said that because of Leap's efforts to increase its sales of the iPhone, the company does not have to purchase more iPhones. Leap has a three-year, $900 million deal with Apple for iPhones.
AT&T previously passed on an opportunity to strike a deal with no-contract wireless carrier Leap Wireless but was ultimately the only bidder for the company and wound up paying 58 percent more than it had initially offered, according to a securities filing.
Less than three months after its merger with MetroPCS, T-Mobile US said it has expanded the MetroPCS footprint by 50 million POPs. Along with starting service in 15 new metro areas, T-Mobile also said it is expanding its bring-your-own-device service to all MetroPCS customers.
Cricket provider Leap Wireless unveiled new device financing options to give its subscribers easier access to high-end smartphones. The flat-rate carrier, which AT&T Mobility is seeking to acquire, said the new plans will, for example, let customers buy Samsung Electronics' Galaxy S4 for as low as $25 down and $25 per month in monthly payments.
T-Mobile US struck back hard against AT&T Mobility's "Next" handset upgrade program, arguing that while the plan tries to copy T-Mobile's "Jump" upgrade program, AT&T is essentially making customers pay for their phones twice with Next.