Ericsson is working with Qualcomm and several major carriers to trial unlicensed LTE service in the 5 GHz band. The carriers, including Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile US and SK Telecom, are at the vanguard of deploying what is known as License Assisted Access (LAA) or LTE-Unlicensed (LTE-U).
According to the latest bi-annual report from network testing firm RootMetrics, Verizon Wireless continued to lead in overall performance with AT&T Mobility not far behind. However, thanks to improvements Sprint made in fixing blocked calls and texting reliability, Sprint leapfrogged back over T-Mobile US for third place overall. In RootMetrics' report for the first half of 2014, T-Mobile overtook Sprint for the No. 3 spot.
T-Mobile US said recent filings by AT&T Mobility and Verizon Wireless that seek to reverse a December FCC ruling on data roaming are "nothing more than untimely renewed attempts" to tilt roaming regulations that favor AT&T and Verizon. The FCC's ruling late last year provided clarification and guidance over what constitutes a "commercially reasonable" data roaming agreement, and was largely a win for T-Mobile and smaller carriers.
Frontier Communications officially emerged as the suitor for the $10.5 billion in wireline assets that Verizon wants to offload, signifying its ongoing effort to scale its reach in new markets and deepen its presence in others it already serves. But it remains to be seen how Frontier integrates these new assets.
Verizon Wireless' decision to cut pricing on most of its More Everything shared data plans by $10 is an indication that the carrier is going to be more willing to compete directly with Sprint and T-Mobile US and is less concerned with rival AT&T Mobility, according to financial analysts. Additionally, Verizon's promotion to cut the monthly access charge of many customers who use its Edge equipment installment plan could be a way to spur Edge adoption and improve EBITDA, according to one analyst.
The nation's largest wireless carriers offered some insights into how they prepared for Sunday's Super Bowl XLIX game between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks, as well as how much traffic they saw on their networks during the game.
Amid intensifying price competition, Verizon Wireless said it will cut prices on most options for its More Everything shared data plans, including many by $10 per month. The carrier is also adding some higher-usage data buckets to its offerings. The price cuts are the clearest sign yet that while Verizon may be chugging along in terms of subscriber additions it is not immune to pressure from Sprint, T-Mobile US and AT&T Mobility.
PEG Bandwidth is one of the many competitors that are willing to provide dark fiber services to wireless operators like Verizon Wireless, but the company is seeing some carriers put their plans on hold.
Thanks to its $18.2 billion in new AWS-3 spectrum, AT&T Mobility has caught up to Verizon Wireless in spectrum ownership in major markets, according to analysts. "We estimate that AT&T and Verizon are in general parity in terms of paired low- and mid-band spectrum assets in the top 20 markets (~120 MHz), with AT&T spending $18 billion to Verizon's $10 billion," Jefferies analysts Mike McCormack, Scott Goldman and Tudor Mustata wrote in a research note.
Dish Network is spending around $10 billion to acquire a wide range of spectrum licenses in the FCC's now-completed AWS-3 spectrum auction. That spectrum, combined with the wide-ranging spectrum licenses that Dish already owns, will turn Charlie Ergen's company into a spectrum powerhouse. But it's still not clear what Ergen's Dish is going to do with all of its airwaves.