Mobile // Mobile Devices
12:12 PM
How to Keep Mobile Threats at Bay
Jun 01, 2016
With savvy cybercriminals using vulnerabilities in apps, networks, and operating systems to gain c ...Read More>>

T-Mobile Pitching Investment In Sprint Clearwire

Deal would help Sprint get funding to complete its WiMax rollout, and give T-Mobile a foothold in the 4G wireless market.

Slideshow: Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 Revealed
(click for larger image and for full photo gallery)
Under pressure from stockholders to improve their financial performance, Sprint Nextel and T-Mobile USA -- the third and fourth largest U.S. mobile phone carriers, respectively -- are reported to be discussing the possibility of T-Mobile investing in Sprint's Clearwire operation.

The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that Sprint's directors are debating allowing T-Mobile to invest in its Clearwire unit, which needs additional financing to complete the nationwide rollout of its 4G WiMax network. With a 54% ownership stake, Sprint controls Clearwire.

While both Sprint/Clearwire and T-Mobile currently have strong, new networks, they are likely to be overshadowed in the coming months by Verizon Wireless' long-term evolution network, which is scheduled to debut by the end of this year. AT&T plans to follow with its own LTE network next year.

An investment in Clearwire by T-Mobile could involve the Deutsche Telekom unit in Clearwire's TD-LTE trials planned for Arizona later this year. Fueling the push for all carriers to get on the LTE bandwagon is a new report from the Global Mobile Suppliers Association, which shows a more than 70% jump in six months in the number of carriers committing to LTE.

In the meantime, Sprint/Clearwire and T-Mobile are touting their networks' robustness. Clearwire's WiMax network -- already up and running in several dozen U.S. cities – is well-established and popular with users while T-Mobile's HSPA+ overlay is being touted by the company as being as good or better than the Sprint 4G offering.

In spite of their robustness and popularity, Clearwire's WiMax and T-Mobile's HSPA+ are increasingly looking like interim networks as the mobile world marches to LTE.

The Wall Street Journal report noted that there are differences among Sprint's directors on doing a T-Mobile deal. Earlier this year, T-Mobile Deutschland explored the possibility of spinning off T-Mobile USA in an initial public offering or an acquisition, but neither approach got any traction at the time.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Building A Mobile Business Mindset
Building A Mobile Business Mindset
Among 688 respondents, 46% have deployed mobile apps, with an additional 24% planning to in the next year. Soon all apps will look like mobile apps and it's past time for those with no plans to get cracking.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2016 InformationWeek Elite 100
Our 28th annual ranking of the leading US users of business technology.
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.