Sprint has to pay the FCC $7.5 million for failing to honor the agency's do-not-call rules by making unwanted calls and sending unwanted text messages to consumers.
AT&T Mobility will restrict the maximum download speeds available to its new Cricket prepaid customers to 8 Mbps on LTE devices and 4 Mbps on HSPA+ devices. The action is likely a way for AT&T to differentiate its AT&T-branded services from its Cricket-branded prepaid services, which now operate over the same network.
Now that AT&T's bid to acquire DirecTV is official, and the FCC's rules for the spectrum screen and the 600 MHz auction are finalized, the merger-and-acquisition landscape in the wireless industry is now much, much clearer. Specifically, the proposed merger between Sprint and T-Mobile US appears significantly more daunting, and a Verizon purchase of Dish Network's spectrum appears somewhat more likely.
AT&T's announcement that it will buy DirecTV in a $49 billion deal leaves Dish Network once again without a potential partner or suitor. However, analysts say the deal could be what pushes Dish and its Chairman Charlie Ergen to find a long-term wireless partner.
Sprint said it will shine in the second half of the year and set itself apart from the competition in terms of network speeds and improved capacity. At that time, Sprint will be deploying LTE radios in the 2.5 GHz spectrum, said a senior Sprint executive at an investor conference Monday.
AT&T Mobility said it plans to purchase between 20 MHz and 40 MHz of spectrum in the FCC's 600 MHz incentive auction of broadcast TV spectrum, set for next year, if the auction entices enough broadcasters to participate. However, Verizon Wireless said only that the FCC has made "progress" on the rules for the auction, comments likely reflecting the carrier's displeasure with auction rules designed to limit the amount of 600 MHz spectrum AT&T and Verizon can acquire during the auction.
WASHINGTON--The FCC adopted rules for next year's incentive auction of 600 MHz broadcast TV spectrum that are more favorable to Verizon Wireless and AT&T than initially contemplated. However, Sprint, T-Mobile US, Dish Network and smaller carriers are likely to claim some measure of victory because the FCC agreed to allow some spectrum to be reserved for carriers that do not control large amounts of low-band spectrum.
Democratic Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel has said that it might be necessary for Sprint and T-Mobile US to merge in order to remain viable players in the U.S. wireless market, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal. That position is notable as it could represent an easing of regulatory opposition to the proposed deal, which Sprint and parent SoftBank have been floating during the past several months.
As the first-quarter reporting season comes to a close, it's time to start parsing the information to see which carriers slipped and which managed to get ahead. FierceWireless takes a close look at the performance of U.S. wireless operators in the first quarter of 2014, including churn, ARPU and other major metrics compiled by Strategy Analytics.
The following charts the top U.S. wireless carriers in the first quarter of 2014 by subscriber base, according to research firm Strategy Analytics, and includes major metrics--such as churn, ARPU and revenue--of each carrier.