Rural and regional carriers have been looking for the FCC to bring down the hammer on compulsory roaming from the big players for years now
, and in light of the recent investigations into potential anti-competitive practices, Verizon's throwing yet another bone
in an apparent effort to be on its best behavior while the scrutiny continues. This time around, the company is proposing that a law be put in effect requiring it to offer smaller carriers two years of guaranteed roaming contracts in areas where those smaller carriers own spectrum but haven't yet built out their network, with certain situations entitling them to a third year. The regionals weren't happy
with the handset exclusivity compromise and they don't appear to be happy with this deal, either -- Leap, owner of Cricket
, has already come out and complained that Verizon need roaming contracts "over two decades as it built out its network and acquired competitors" and is only offering a couple years in return, so this battle may be far from over.
[Via Phone Scoop
*Verizon is currently in the process of acquiring AOL, Engadget's parent company. However, Engadget maintains full editorial control, and Verizon will have to pry it from our cold, dead hands.