LightSquared Wins 30-Day Reprieve on FCC Decision
Sprint has given LightSquared a 30-day grace period to score approval from the Federal Communications Commission to operate its Long Term Evolution network in the L-Band spectrum. Earlier this year, Sprint said LightSquared would give it a 20MHz channel of L-Band spectrum in the 1600MHz band that Sprint would use for its own LTE network. However, Sprint had the option to back out of the deal with LightSquared if the U.S. government did not approve LightSquared's L-Band spectrum use by the end of the year. The FCC has not made a final ruling on the matter, and LightSquared still faces opposition from the GPS, aviation, and military industries. Sprint has extended the December 31 deadline to January 30, giving LightSquared a bit more time to gain the necessary approval from the FCC to operate its planned LTE network. The deal with Sprint will save LightSquared about $13 billion between now and 2020.
Sprint Says Network Vision Is Basically Done
Sprint recently indicated that its years-long Network Vision project is coming to a close. Sprint's 1900MHz LTE network covers 260 million POPs, according to Sprint CFO Joe Euteneuer, who made the comments at a Bank of America investor conference this week.
Sprint Retires 'Spark' and Launches 'LTE Plus'
Sprint is rebranding its LTE 4G network in an effort to call attention to the technology involved in making the network tick. Sprint LTE Plus replaces the Sprint Spark name for the company's tri-band LTE network, which uses 800MHz, 1.9GHz, and 2.5GHz.
Sprint Targeting 2019 Launch for 5G On Its 2.5 GHz Spectrum
Sprint today said it is working with Qualcomm and SoftBank to develop 5G technologies, including the 3GPP New Radio (NR) standard, for Sprint's 2.5 GHz spectrum (Band 41). Sprint's 2.5 GHz airwaves offer a massive footprint around the country, making it ideal for providing coverage.
T-Mobile Rolling Out LTE-U
T-Mobile today said it is beginning to upgrade its 4G network with LTE-U this spring. LTE-U allows LTE to operate on the unlicensed spectrum in the 5 GHz band, which is typically reserved for WiFi.
FCC Likely to Side with AT&T and Verizon in Spectrum Fight
The FCC is close to making a final decision regarding how much spectrum to set aside for smaller carriers in next year's 600MHz auction and T-Mobile isn't going to be happy. The FCC has already set aside 30MHz of the airwaves in question for smaller carriers, thereby limiting how much spectrum AT&T and Verizon — the nation's two largest carriers — can acquire.
Sprint has given them a 30 day extension before their agreement expires and LS loses another potential customer and use of Sprints spectrum.