AT&T and T-Mobile USA have formally filed with the FCC to transfer some of AT&T’s AWS spectrum to T-Mobile. The spectrum transfer is a condition of the breakup fee stemming from AT&T’s failed $39 billion takeover of T-Mobile USA.
Altogether 128 geographic bands are being transferred, some at 2.1GHz and others at the less-popular 1.8GHz, though both are suitable for 3G and/or LTE services, explains The Register.
As part of the breakup fee, T-Mobile will get AWS spectrum from AT&T in 128 market areas, including in 12 of the top 20 markets in the United States: Atlanta, Boston, Baltimore, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C. T-Mobile wants to use the extra spectrum to expand capacity on its HSPA+ network.
Currently, T-Mobile offers an HSPA+42 network covering 184 million POPs in 175 markets, according to Fierce Wireless.
The breakup fee includes $3 billion in cash, as well as a seven-year UMTS roaming agreements that will allow T-Mobile to expand its coverage to 280 million POPs from 230 million today.