The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved AT&T’s proposed acquisition of Leap Wireless and its assets, including Cricket Wireless. The deal includes 4.6 million customers, spectrum, network equipment and other assets, all of which will be transferred from Leap to AT&T.
But, there’s always some “but” in deals like these. If it wants to proceed with the acquisition of Cricket, AT&T will have to agree to the following:
- AT&T has to divest some spectrum in select markets in southern Texas.
- AT&T has to deploy LTE on Leap’s unused spectrum within 3 to 12 months after the deal closes.
- AT&T has to deploy LTE in 6 Texas markets within 18 months.
- AT&T has to offer certain low-cost rate plans.
- AT&T has to offer a device trade-in program for both smartphones and feature phones.
- AT&T has to maintain Cricket’s existing CDMA-based roaming agreements for as long as it continues to operate the CDMA network.
- AT&T has to divest ownership that Leap has in a competitive wireless telecommunications provider, presuming Leap doesn’t divest them before the deal closes.
This won’t happen overnight but it’s achievable, nonetheless. We still don’t know when the deal will be closed, though.