FCC Chairman Ajit Pai Wednesday welcomed the announcement by T-Mobile and DISH Network that the divestiture of Boost Mobile to DISH has been completed. The Commission conditioned its 2019 approval of T-Mobile’s acquisition of Sprint on T-Mobile divesting prepaid mobile service subsidiary Boost Mobile, so that price-sensitive customers in densely populated areas would not be harmed by the deal. This April, the agency’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau approved the network access agreement reached by T-Mobile and DISH as consistent with the Commission’s conditions to approve the deal. The conditions were meant to ensure Boost could compete once it was divested to DISH.
“I’m pleased to see that T-Mobile has met one of its most important merger commitments,” said Pai. He called the action “a key step towards promoting vigorous competition in the wireless marketplace, particularly for price-conscious consumers in our nation’s cities.”
Pai also welcomes DISH’s entry into the mobile industry. “With this divestiture and its existing spectrum resources, DISH has the potential to make a big impact on a wireless marketplace that’s transitioning to 5G. Of course, while this divestiture is good news, the Commission remains committed to ensuring that T-Mobile and DISH comply in the coming months and years with all of the conditions imposed by the FCC in this proceeding.”
By leveraging T-Mobile’s network and spectrum resources through a network access agreement, the agency believes DISH will be able to offer competitive service options while it builds out its own 5G network. DISH has made a commitment to use its acquisition of Boost Mobile, along with 5G infrastructure investments, to deploy a competitive 5G wireless service using its long-held spectrum licenses. DISH’s buildout plan includes a first-of-its-kind greenfield standalone 5G network using open radio access network equipment and virtualized, cloud-native 5G-RAN software.
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