AT&T, T-Mobile AWS spectrum transfer approved by the FCCAlex Wagner - Deputy Managing Editor, News Desk
As part of the break-up fee that AT&T will be giving T-Mobile after the death last year's proposed acquisition involving the two companies, AT&T agreed to hand over $3 billion in cash and $1 billion worth of spectrum to T-Mobile. Three months after AT&T and T-Mobile filed paperwork to the FCC for the spectrum transfer, T-Mobile has announced that the exchange has been given the go-ahead by the government agency. The transfer will see T-Mobile gain AWS spectrum in 128 Cellular Market Areas, including 12 of the top 20 markets. T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray's statement on the news of the transfer:
“We applaud the FCC for acting swiftly to approve the transfer of these spectrum licenses. Securing this additional spectrum was a key catalyst for our plans to launch LTE in 2013 and is therefore good news for our customers.”
So there you go, T-Mobilers. As Ray mentioned, T-Mobile is planning to use this AWS spectrum to launch an LTE network, which it plans to flip the switch on next year. The carrier has also said that it'll be pouring $4 billion over time to help modernize its existing voice and data coverage and deploy LTE. T-Mobile doesn't mention exactly which markets it'll be gaining AWS spectrum from AT&T in, but a map of the areas was put together using the transfer application that the two carriers filed with the FCC. T-Mobile's full statement on today's news is below.
Statement: Transfer of Spectrum from AT&T to T-Mobile Approved by FCC
New Spectrum a Catalyst for T-Mobile’s Plans to Launch LTE in 2013
Bellevue, Wash. — Apr. 25, 2012
This week, the FCC approved the transfer of AWS spectrum licenses from AT&T to T-Mobile USA, agreed to as part of the breakup of the proposed merger between the two companies. This transfer provides T-Mobile with a large package of valuable AWS mobile spectrum in 128 Cellular Market Areas (CMAs), including 12 of the top 20 markets.
“We applaud the FCC for acting swiftly to approve the transfer of these spectrum licenses,” said Neville Ray, chief technology officer, T-Mobile USA. “Securing this additional spectrum was a key catalyst for our plans to launch LTE in 2013 and is therefore good news for our customers.”
T-Mobile recently announced its 4G evolution strategy. The company will invest $4 billion on network modernization to improve existing voice and data coverage, and broadly deploy LTE in 2013. T-Mobile continues to need more AWS spectrum to support its 4G evolution efforts and the continued growth in mobile data services.