AT&T Inc.(NYSE:T) In A Spectrum Shopping Binge To Catch Up On Verizon

AT&T Inc.(NYSE:T) is gathering about $2.6 billion in deals for catching up with Verizon, the wireless carrier that has vaulted ahead in the race to store the most precious asset of the industry.

AT&T has forwarded a proposal of at least 24 deals in the last 4 months for the rights to spectrum technology that incorporates radio waves to transmit data connections and mobile phone calls. Verizon has won US approval on 23rd August to achieve airwave rights from Comcast and three more cable companies for $3.9 billion.

According to an analyst at Stifel Nicolaus & Co in Baltimore, Chris king, apart from keeping up with Verizon, AT&T’s buying binge is intended to relieve pressure on its network as data traffic from tablets and smartphones taxes its wireless exposure. Getting more government licenses to use spectrum technology provides companies with greater capacities on their networks to handle increasing demand
King also said that AT&T seems to be trying to get its arms around as many spectrum rights as possible.

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As per John Hodulik, a UBS AG analyst, AT&T’s plans are predicted to boost its most significant spectrum holdings by 62% in the 100 biggest US markets. The proposals made by AT&T are facing review by the Federal Communications Commission. The proposals include a $600 million purchase of NextWave Wireless. It is a radiowave deal with Sirius XM Radio Inc. to utilize satellite signals.

An AT&T spokesman in Dallas, Brad Burns has said that AT&T is working to unveil unused spectrum for mobile internet usage and adding capability to keep up the pace with increasing consumer demand. An FCC spokesman, Mark Wigfield has refused to comment on this.

As per the statement of Tim Farrar of TMF Associates Inc., AT&T is expected to be the highest bidder for airwaves that Verizon is willing to sell as it will fill in the gaps in the company’s spectrum holdings. Farrar has estimated that AT&T will have to pay $2 billion for the airwaves that Verizon has proposed to sell.

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