Sprint and U.S. Cellular announced late last year that they'd entered into an agreement that would see Sprint dropping $480 million on U.S. Cellular-owned spectrum and customers in the Midwest, and today that deal reached completion. Sprint just announced that the transaction has closed, giving it 20MHz of PCS spectrum in "various Midwest markets" like Chicago, South Bend, Ind., and Champaign, Ill. Additionally, Sprint will be gaining 10MHz of PCS spectrum in St. Louis. Sprint says that the deal will increase its network capacity and improve the experience of its customers in these markets.
Along with all of its shiny new spectrum, Sprint is getting around 420,000 U.S. Cellular customers as part of the transaction. Both Sprint and U.S. Cellular have already notified these subscribers of the deal, and Sprint says that it'll send them more details of the exact timing of the transition and of the switch itself, which will take place over several months. The affected customers will have access to special offers from Sprint, Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile that will allow them to get a new device at a "significantly reduced" cost. Customers can visit sprint.com/uscellular for more information.
Today's news is pretty exciting for Sprint customers that are located in the markets where Hesse and Co. are gaining additional spectrum. It's not clear exactly which areas those are or when Sprint plans to begin taking advantage of its newly-acquired spectrum, but once it does, Sprint customers should see an improved network experience. Meanwhile, affected U.S. Cellular customers that decide to switch to Sprint will be able to upgrade to a new hardware at a discounted rate, which is always exciting. Sprint's full announcement on the completion of its U.S. Cellular deal can be found at the link below.