Several articles state that Qwest is renegotiating with Sprint on how the service is resold through the telco. Qwest wants to copy the model they use for reselling Direct TV. Currently Qwest acts as a go-between for Direct TV and the customer. Direct TV handles the installation/equipment and CS. Qwest just bundles the service with your bill in which you get a bundling discount.
An analyst also reports that due to the large rural area that Qwest covers, customers are not getting the coverage Sprint promises. He recommends that Qwest partner with a different carrier that better suits the regions needs.
Since Qwest is currently an MNVO, does this mean that they are going to get out of the cell phone business and just act as a middlem... (continues)
They would be forced to partner with Verizon or Alltel, due to the type of phones they use. If they decided to go GSM, they'd have to buy new phones for all the current subscribers. (Probably NOT an option.)
I think no matter who they team with, Qwest would have to change phones due to software issues. If they want to stay CDMA then they have to go with Verizon. Alltel doesn't cover the geographic area, at least in Colorado. The only other big players that cover Qwest's market is ATT and T-Mo.
As was made public early yesterday, Qwest was in fact speaking with Verizon about possible partnerships. Because as the OP pointed out Qwest's 14 state region does cover some of the most "rural" areas of the country. In straight coverage terms, VZW would provide a better solution in my opinion.