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Official: Verizon to buy Alltel for $28b

updated 10:35 am EDT, Thu June 5, 2008

Verizon Buys Alltel

Quickly following up on earlier confirmations by its partner Vodafone, Verizon on Thursday said it would buy out Alltel in a cash merger with a total value of about $28.1 billion. The deal is mutually agreed upon and should see the union take place by the end of the year following approvals from the US government; Alltel chief Scott Ford will continue to run Alltel until the deal is completed.


The companies both see immediate advantages to the deal. Verizon expects to make an immediate gain from the venture after discounting the costs of the deal, and says it will pick up about 57 largely countryside markets that it doesn't currently own. The move also gives Verizon an extra 13 million subscribers over what it claimed as of the first quarter of this year, pushing its total customer base to over 80 million and surpassing AT&T's 71 million to become the largest carrier in the US.

Alltel in turn primarily receives a technological upgrade, including a shorter timeframe for its planned upgrade to 4G using the Long Term Evolution standard. It additionally gives Alltel customers access to an over-the-air music store, national coverage without roaming fees, and the ability to use unrestricted devices and software through the Open Development Initiative, Verizon says.

The impact on jobs at either company has yet to be determined, though Verizon expects to save as much as $1 billion two years into a successful merger.

If completed, the merger gives the CDMA cellular standard a temporary lead in the US market. While CDMA is used by more carriers today, AT&T's lead presently gives GSM the most subscribers attached to an individual carrier. It will also adopt LTE, however, permitting its customers to roam on the now unified Alltel and Verizon networks when they switch to the 4G format by about 2010.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. wings_rfs

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Dec 2002

    +1

    Upgrade/Downgrade

    OK, Alltel may get "a technological upgrade", but my experience with Verizon tells me that Alltel will also receive a billing downgrade. The reason I left Verizon and went with Alltel is because I got tired of calling them every month due to billing errors. (And not one was ever in my favor.)

  1. ClockNova

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2001

    +3

    Secret Police

    And I've 18 months left on my contract before I can switch to a carrier that won't sell out my personal information to the government. I avoided ATT and Verizon because of their treacherous behavior, and now I'm being dragged into the arms of the gestapo. Great.

  1. bjojade

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2007

    0

    Huh?

    If completed, the merger gives the CDMA cellular standard a temporary lead in the US market. While CDMA is used by more carriers today, AT&T's lead presently gives GSM the most subscribers attached to an individual carrier.

    How does the merger change suddenly change how many CDMA phones are in use? It doesn't. The number of users on the standard stays the same.

    All they're saying is that the largest cell carrier in the US will be based on the CDMA standard. It really doesn't mean much.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    -6

    Re: Secret police

    Um....two things.

    1) How do you know Alltel isn't already doing this (the only way the other companies are known is because of leaks, not because the gov't or the phone company has wanted you to know this).

    2) None of these companies are selling your information. That's just total BS!

    They're giving it to the gov't free of charge.

    But you must be a terrorist or a terrorist sympathizer if you have problems with this. Lock 'im up, boys!

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