FCC Approves T-Mobile Acquisition of Low-Band Spectrum in Key U.S. Markets

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The FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau has approved T-Mobile’s acquisition of low-band spectrum from Verizon Wireless.  The deal, announced in January 2014, consists of T-Mobile acquiring from Verizon Wireless all of the Lower 700 MHz A Block licenses that Verizon Wireless won in Auction 73, in exchange for $2.365 billion in cash and AWS (advanced wireless services) spectrum in 19 markets covering 34 million POPs and PCS (personal communications service) spectrum in 8 markets covering 21 million POPs, which together are worth an estimated $950 million.  The 700 MHz A Block licenses acquired by T-Mobile cover approximately 150 million POPs, including 8 of the Top 10 markets and 21 of the Top 30 U.S. markets.  Verizon Wireless first announced in 2012 that it would sell off its Lower 700 MHz A and B license portfolio in order to gain favor with federal regulators while closing its deal to acquire AWS licenses from SpectrumCo, LLC.

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