Making the rumors a reality, Charter Communications (NASDAQ: CHTR) said it plans to buy rival MSO Bright House Networks for $10.4 billion. The merger would combine the nation's sixth and fourth largest cable operators into a company that Charter said would be the second-largest cable operator in the United States.
It's unclear how such the deal might affect the wireless industry, but both companies are players in various wireless initiatives. For example, Charter offers "high-capacity last-mile data connectivity services" to wireless and wireline carriers, ISPs and other competitive carriers on a wholesale basis, making it a key backhaul partner for some wireless operators. Further, while Charter is not a member of the CableWiFi Alliance, Bright House is. The Alliance is designed to create a seamless roaming service among the public Wi-Fi hotspots operated by participating cable operators. Finally, Bright House also has a resale agreement with Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ), a legacy of Bright House selling AWS-1 spectrum to Verizon along with other cable companies.
For more on the Charter/Bright House deal, check out FierceCable's coverage.