Sprint and Clearwire have been (mostly) buddies for a while now, teaming up to help spread WiMAX coverage across the country for owners of their 4G-enabled products. Sprint's also been a majority shareholder in Clearwire for some time, but a new report out of Businessweek claims that the No. 3 carrier may be seeking ways to buy up the portion of Clearwire that it doesn't already own. According to "people familiar with the talks," Sprint has held discussions with Comcast, Cablevision, and Cox about making an investment to help it purchase the remaining 46 percent of Clearwire that isn't under Sprint ownership. Businessweek's sources say that the talks are still in the preliminary stages.
Given Clearwire's recent announcement that it plans to begin rolling out an LTE network and Sprint's LTE-related deal with LightSquared, it could make sense for Dan Hesse and Co. to snap up the entirety of Clearwire. Doing so could help Sprint to get an LTE solution up and running more quickly and help it to better compete with the likes of Verizon and AT&T. Whether or not a deal between Sprint and one of the aforementioned cable companies will actually materialize remains to be seen, but it'd certainly make the 4G race more interesting if one did. Do you think it's a good idea for Sprint to try and buy up Clearwire?