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Sprint ends agreement with LightSquared

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Sprint Nextel Corp. has ended its network-sharing agreement with LightSquared Inc. after federal regulators proposed to revoke the company’s authorization to build its network.

“Sprint has been and continues to be supportive of LightSquared’s business plans and appreciates the company’s efforts to find a resolution to the interference issues impacting its ability to offer service on the 1.6 GHz spectrum,” Sprint said in a statement released Friday morning. “However, due to these unresolved issues, and subject to the provisions of the agreement, Sprint has elected to exercise its right to terminate the agreement announced last summer.”

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission said last month that tests had shown that LightSquared’s network could interfere with global positioning systems used by aircraft and the U.S. Military.
Sprint said it would consider future agreements with LightSquared and other spectrum holders if GPS interference problems were solved.

Sprint and Reston-based LightSquared had signed an 11-year agreement in June 2011 in which LightSquared would have used Sprint’s networks to host its own wireless service.
LightSquared said Friday that it had expected the dissolution of the contract in the wake of the FCC decision.

“These regulatory delays are unfortunate because they will deprive the American people of the benefits of additional competition in the wireless industry,” Doug Smith, chief network officer and interim co-chief operating officer of LightSquared, said.

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