Altice USA and Sprint have come to an agreement that will allow Altice to launch its own wireless service. Through the strategic MVNO agreement, Altice will use Sprint's network to become a wireless carrier, the two companies announced last night.
This deal, while interesting for both sides, comes off right after the merger talks between T-Mobile and Sprint officially ended. The two major carriers were unable to come to an agreement on a few things, mainly who would be the majority stakeholder in the newly-formed company.
Altice, known for operating Optimum and Suddenlink, did not say when it plans to launch its mobile network. It took Comcast around a year to launch Xfinity Mobile on Verizon. Altice was previously known as Cablevision.
Sprint CFO Tarek Robbiati said that the deal between Sprint and Altice would have gone through regardless of whether the merger between T-Mobile and Sprint went through to not. Sprint also made note that its open to other MVNO deals with cable companies, if those deals give Sprint access to their networks.
In this new deal, Sprint is hoping to use the funds to further develop and deploy a better network. USA's fourth larger carrier continues to fall behind. Sprint will get help in “densifying” its network from Altice. Sprint's own customers will be able to use Optimum's Wi-Fi network, which could potentially help fill holes in Sprint's coverage. According to Reuters, Sprint will have access to Altice's cable infrastructure to transmit cellular data and help build out its planned 5G network.