And that, as they say, is that. Sprint this morning announced that its spectrum deal with LightSquared is officially over, and the two companies will go their separate ways. LightSquared's going away with $65 million back in its pockets -- money that Sprint had already accepted as prepayment for costs that were never realized.
Said Sprint in a news release:
“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. 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. We remain open to considering future spectrum hosting agreements with LightSquared, should they resolve these interference issues, as well as other interested spectrum holders.
“Late last year, both companies agreed to halt deployment design and implementation of LightSquared’s network to ensure that Sprint’s Network Vision project remained on schedule. While unfortunate, termination of the agreement will have no impact on Sprint’s current customers and is not material to Sprint’s ongoing business operations. Network Vision remains on schedule and on budget, and we look forward to begin launching our 4G LTE network mid-year.
“Per the terms of the agreement, Sprint has returned $65 million in prepayments LightSquared made to cover costs that were not ultimately incurred by Sprint.”
So what does this mean to you? Really, not all that much. Sprint's still planning on rolling out its LTE network by the middle of the year, and that can't come soon enough for those of us waiting on another option for the Samsung Galaxy Nexus (which just went through the FCC). It just won't be doing so with LightSquared.