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AT&T may have been hoping for the FCC to put the rejection stamp on its proposed transfer of key AWS spectrum to T-Mobile, but no such luck for the GSM giant this time. The fourth-largest carrier in the US, as a consolation prize for humoring AT&T's acquisition attempt, has been given the official go-ahead on accepting spectrum in a grand total of 128 Cellular Market Areas, including 12 of the top 20 markets in the country. This newly acquired property appears to be a key factor in T-Mo's LTE deployment strategy next year, as the company has recently announced plans to invest $4 billion in pushing out its next-gen network.

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Statement: Transfer of Spectrum from AT&T to T-Mobile Approved by FCC
New Spectrum a Catalyst for T-Mobile's Plans to Launch LTE in 2013

Bellevue, Wash. - Apr. 25, 2012
2012-04-25 12:18:20

This week, the FCC approved the transfer of AWS spectrum licenses from AT&T to T-Mobile USA, agreed to as part of the breakup of the proposed merger between the two companies. This transfer provides T-Mobile with a large package of valuable AWS mobile spectrum in 128 Cellular Market Areas (CMAs), including 12 of the top 20 markets.

"We applaud the FCC for acting swiftly to approve the transfer of these spectrum licenses," said Neville Ray, chief technology officer, T-Mobile USA. "Securing this additional spectrum was a key catalyst for our plans to launch LTE in 2013 and is therefore good news for our customers."

T-Mobile recently announced its 4G evolution strategy. The company will invest $4 billion on network modernization to improve existing voice and data coverage, and broadly deploy LTE in 2013. T-Mobile continues to need more AWS spectrum to support its 4G evolution efforts and the continued growth in mobile data services.