The FCC and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) are reportedly ready to approve Verizon’s $3.9 billion spectrum purchase from a group of cable companies, including Comcast and Time Warner. However, antitrust regulators are looking to modify the deal in an effort to prevent possible unfair side deals between the involved companies.
One of these feared deals is an alleged joint venture to create new technologies that would allow consumers to switch between wired and wireless connections seamlessly. The concern is that this new technology would only be available to companies involved in the spectrum deal.
These proposed changes would forbid Verizon and Comcast from marketing each other’s products in FIOS markets and would restrict cross marketing in other territories to a limited time frame, Reuters said. The negotiations wrap up by the end of August.
Already the nation’s largest wireless carrier with a well-established LTE network, this new spectrum is likely to give Verizon an edge over its competition if approved. The quell competition concerns, however, Verizon Wireless announced it will sell all of its 700MH A and B spectrum holdings. It currently uses the 700MHz upper-C spectrum for its 4G LTE wireless network.
However, Verizon is not the only mobile carrier that would gain something if this deal is approved. T-Mobile USA has a pending spectrum swapping agreement with Verizon that is dependent on the deal’s approval. This would help T-Mobile in its efforts to bring LTE to its customers next year.