Softbank’s Majority Stake in Sprint Provides Hope For Speedy, Unlimited 4G in US

October 24, 2012

Softbank is purchasing 70% of Sprint Nextel, pending approval from the U.S Justice Dept. and FCC, and may thereby provide Sprint with the resources it needs to speed completion of its 4G long term evolution (LTE) network in the U.S. A wider 4G presence will enable Sprint to better compete with Verizon and AT&T, especially if it maintains a truly unlimited data plan as part of its portfolio. The $20.1 billion cash injection should provide Sprint some much-needed capital to balance its net debt of $15 billion.

Wireless-only workers are a small but growing group; companies that report having wireless (cellular or Wi-Fi) only workers expect them to be 11.3% of the staff by 2013.

BTA Bottom Line: Monitor Sprint’s LTE rollout with a focus on speed and latency numbers as well as whether they can maintain their truly unlimited data plans. Wireless-only and often-wireless workers’ increasingly capable devices will continue to consume large volumes of data—and become progressively important to accomplishing the work of the business.