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Sprint Nextel network/tower merger

Discussion in 'Sprint Forum' started by SmArTeStChIlD421, Jun 25, 2006.

  1. xenophon

    xenophon Member
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    From what I understand, getting approval to add a site and leasing it is more costly than adding the equipment. Yes, Sprint would have to essentially do all the things necessary to add CDMA to a Nextel site vs. a new site. But there is one key advantage... there is already community approval and a lease out for the site.

    Adding 10K more CDMA cellsites on existing Nextel cellsites isn't very unrealistic. All the carriers have been adding thousands. Sprint now has over 26,000 CDMA sites, more than Verizon. I don't recall exactly what it was in past but 14K in 2000 rings a bell, so they have been adding many sites anyhow. Now they can add a lot more and not have to go through community approvals, legal expenses for lease agreements.
     
  2. coalminer

    coalminer Senior Member
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    I allways thought that CDMA could not do data and voice at the same time, but this was at the bottom of my bill this past month:

    Verizon Wireless has implemented an improvement to your current voice and data service. The new feature enables you to receive incoming
    voice calls while you are actively engaged in a 1X data session, such as email, Internet, or our Get It Now Services. This feature is similar to
    your existing voice call waiting and was already enabled within our BroadbandAccess Rate and Coverage Area for all of our customers with
    EVDO-capable handsets. To find out more about this new feature, please access our website at the following
    location:www.verizonwireless.com/cpop.
    Now Available--Call Waiting for Wireless Data
     
  3. xenophon

    xenophon Member
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    ^That doesn't allow voice/data simultaneously. What it allows is for the phone to ring while in the middle of data. If you take the call, you can't do data while talking.

    But it is an improvement that the phone will ring instead of going straight to voice mail while doing active data.
     
  4. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    By the way Nextel does still own a lot of towers. A quick search at sprintsitesusa.com turned up nearly 700 Nextel owned towers (Nextel site ID's not Sprint's) in California alone.
     
  5. wirles

    wirles I'm baaaaaaaaaack
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    I would venture a guess that most of what you see is 'managed' sites that are owned by someone else. They were probably sold in a lease back deal where Sprint Sites USA holds the rights to lease and manage the property or just has the ability to lease out space as an agent/rep to the owner in a revenue share.

    I say that because the last I checked, Sprint/Nextel combined only directly owns 2000 towers in total. That is after the many sale/leaseback deals that have been done to free up cash.
     
  6. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    What's your source for that 2000 number? I find that hard to believe. When they reached that deal with Global Signal a couple of years ago there were still a good number of towers that were not included in that deal that Sprint & Nextel should still own and manage on their own. All of the towers that were turned over to Global Signal were subsequently removed from sprintsitesusa.com. Whatever is left should be corporate owned.
     
  7. xenophon

    xenophon Member
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    Whether it is corporate owned or not seems irrelevant. They can still coordinate adding CDMA to existing iDen sites whether they own them or not. No community approvals or new leasing arrangements since they are already in place.

    Nextel has at least 20K total iDen sites in place (I've seen higher numbers) of which 10K are slated for adding CDMA...
    http://www.steelintheair.com/Blog/celltowerinfoblog.html
     
  8. xenophon

    xenophon Member
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    http://ir.wfinet.com/downloads/051122wfi.pdf

    As of Q4/2005

    Cingular 40,000 (TDMA/GSM/AMPS - anyone have a breakdown?)
    Sprint Nextel 48,000 (about 26K-28K are CDMA so 20-22K must be iDen)
    T-Mobile 31,000
    Verizon 23,000
    Other 38,000
     
    #38 xenophon, Jul 18, 2006
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2006
  9. wirles

    wirles I'm baaaaaaaaaack
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    My source it Rich Biby...founder and publisher of AGL Magazine.
    http://www.agl-mag.com/

    They had an article that stated:
    From AGL Magazine: the numbers of towers owned directly by the wireless carriers:

    Cingular- 7000 (minus 500 or so towers that are being sold)
    TMobile- 4500
    Sprint/Nextel- 2000
    Verizon- unknown


    Global Signal (they will always be Pinnacle to me) only did a master lease/sub-lease agreement with revenue terms for the 6000 or so towers. That was strictly with Sprint prior to the merger as a means for Sprint to get some capital, IIRC.
     
  10. xenophon

    xenophon Member
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    ^I'd think with all of the affiliates that Sprint has recently acquired, they now _own_ more than 2000 towers.
     
  11. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    I don't believe that 2000 figure at all. It's much higher than that. I noticed that Sprint just started adding Ubiquitel towers to sprintsitesusa.com today. Anything on sprintsitesusa.com is corporate owned. And there are a lot more than 2000 now.
     
  12. wirles

    wirles I'm baaaaaaaaaack
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    What makes you think all sites listed on their are corporate owned?
     
  13. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    That's the way it's always been. When I say owned I mean they have management control of them (not necessarily owning the structure itself). It means that Sprint corporate has control over those towers and is looking to lease them out to other companies for co-location. There are way more than 2000 of them.

    When they made the deal with Global signal they removed all of those sites that were part of the deal from sprintsitesusa.com because they no longer had management of them. Why would you think that they're not corporate owned? If they're not corporate owned what's the point of having a web site like that? Obviously they can't be the landlord looking to lease to other companies if they don't own the towers.
     
  14. wirles

    wirles I'm baaaaaaaaaack
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    I agree with the portion in bold....I was only stating that they don't actually own the tower....they have management rights to lease them. Saying they are 'corporate owned' means that Sprint/Nextel owns the tower, not just the status of holding the rights to lease/sub-lease. Ownership meaning they have the ability to sell the tower to ATC or Global for several hundred thousand (double digit multiples of cash flow).

    Not to be a pr!ck, but your example is not ownership, it is lease rights.
     
  15. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    Well I don't think any of us here know for sure. But like another poster mentioned it's irrelevant to the fact that Sprint can still add CDMA equipment to any of the ones they own or manage.
     
  16. wirles

    wirles I'm baaaaaaaaaack
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    If the manage, but do not own.....they still need to do a lease application to the owner, get a structural analysis done, get additional utilities, and permits as well as build it and provide equipment.
     
  17. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    Yep of course. But it's still a lot easier than to do an entirely new project from scratch. Each City/County has their own rules about these kinds of co-locations. Some of them are surprisingly easy while others have lots of red tape. It depends on the local government in charge and the local landline carrier.

    I still think Sprint owns a lot more than 2000 towers, especially after the affiliates and Nextel Partners deals all closing.
     
  18. SmArTeStChIlD421

    SmArTeStChIlD421 Silver Senior Member
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    there is a post in the Sprint forum that in September/October they will introduce Sprint Family Calling.........this will make Sprint, Nextel, Boost, and Virgin all Mobile to Mobile.......it will occur after complete purchase and merge of Nextel Partners
     
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  19. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    The purchase of Nextel Partners as well as the other affiliates are all fully completed now. But that will be nice when they include everything in the Family calling plan.
     
  20. SmArTeStChIlD421

    SmArTeStChIlD421 Silver Senior Member
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    well it will be a seperate add on......i think it said $5.......cuz M2M includes only Sprint and Nextel......with $5 it will also include Boost and Virgin Mobile as well......i think it said a total of 55 million subs......cingular is at 60 million cuz everyone thinks they have the greatest network when they don't even distinguish roaming :mad:
     
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  21. wirles

    wirles I'm baaaaaaaaaack
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    Yes, because that feature is the true measure of a network's quality ;)

    Anyone have stats on how many (meaqsured in percentage of total subscribers) are on local plans versus regional or national ones?

    Personally, it has been at least 8 years of more since I worried about roaming anytime other than traveling abroad.
     
  22. TowerDog112

    TowerDog112 New Member

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    IM a tower technition It will be easy to intergrate the IDEN with the CDMA. IDEN works on 850 MHZ CDMA 1900 MHz. this is how. Im currently doiung alot of the cingular UMTS projects. The configeration is hard to explain. but heres the short form. they wont require new hard lines just at least 3 more antennas on each site and a cabnet or radios in te shelter. Think of a cable splitter. well there called Diplexers. they split the signal top and bottom. the exosting antennas will have to be switched for duel band quad port antennas. mount Diplexers at the top and bottom the only part that will create a lease problem is a new cabnit or repllace for bier ones that can handle more radios. I like nokias set up. thats what cingular is using now. so the 850-898 frequency band only needs TMA's (tower mounted amplifier) With the use of diplexers you can turn 6 hard lines into 12. the are making quad diplexers so you can get 24 jumpers off 6 lines. With the correct Bias-t TMA's and Diplexers it splits the bands. What we are waiting on is the FCC rebanding of pulic safty frequencies and to find out if if nextel can keep theirs dedicated frequency rang as per market. Granted it would be better to take the Diplexers out of the equation. they have a avrage Bd loss of -2 and then you have to have TMA's to compensate. It's already being tested in 3 markets if it passes then it will roll real quick. 2 yrs max to combine the two systems. If you need more info PM me ill be happy to answer questions. I work on all carriers here recently its beed T-mobile, Cingular, and rawland nextel sites. Verizon uses the same contractors and its hard to et on their bid list however 2 winters ago I was upgradeing the whole Charlotte NC market for theor broad band capabilties. One more thing. whats hard is getting the extra T1 data feeds in most places they are maxed out with data fill issues.
     
  23. hillbilly44

    hillbilly44 Senior Member
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    TowerDog;

    You are correct in 95% of what you say, however the CDMA + IDEN are not compatible networks. So it will take more than adding jumpers and diplexers to fix this issue.:D
     
  24. TelcomJunkie

    TelcomJunkie Bad Handoff Investigator
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    There's two things that people are discussing here, the physical site merger and a technology merger. We all know the technologies of Sprint and Nextel are different, no debate on that.

    As for the site merger that's an easy possibility. They may not choose to share feedlines and keep the antennas seperate but it would be easy in numerous cases to merge to physical sites next to each other into on. Nextel typically used large shelters for their equipment while all the Sprint gear is mounted in weatherproof cabinets. For them to bring the Sprint gear either inside the shelter or at least into the same perimeter wouldn't not be complex, would be cost effective and make things easier on the technicians since the techs are servicing both previous carriers equipment.
     
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  25. SmArTeStChIlD421

    SmArTeStChIlD421 Silver Senior Member
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    but if i remember correctly SPrint Nextel has stated that they plan to operate iDEN through 2010.......wat happens after that???
     
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  26. TelcomJunkie

    TelcomJunkie Bad Handoff Investigator
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    For all we know the Nextel iDen system may be running for another 20 years. I guarantee, as long as it is profitable it will still be running. They won't shut it down if it's still turning a buck.
     
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  27. SmArTeStChIlD421

    SmArTeStChIlD421 Silver Senior Member
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    they only things i like about the Nextel system are the high quality walkie talkie and the fact that it uses a low frequency (800 MHz) to cover distance.....thats the one pro that they have over sprint since sprint is still using 1900 MHz

    the things i hate about Nextel are that they have the most volatile text messaging service ever......one day it may be slow and the other day texts may go through in seconds.....and they don't have a high-speed data network like all the other companies (EDGE, UMTS, EV-DO, etc.)

    the top paragraph is the only reason that sprint will keep the iDEN network running....i don't think that it is enough of a reason
     
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  28. TelcomJunkie

    TelcomJunkie Bad Handoff Investigator
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    It's all to easy with all the technologies out there that iDen was designed in the early 90's and went live around 1994. It was designed as a two way radio service WITH telephone interconnect features. Since it's design/initial release it's had some major updates in 2000, 2002 and a couple of minor updates since then. It wasn't initially designed to interface with cellular technologies it was designed to be completely stand alone.


    As for the frequencies, penetration totally sucks once you pass 500mhz. It starts dropping quick, it's not great at 800 and even worse at 1900. On the flip side though the lack of propagation from a far site is a good thing for the networks. It allows them to run sites closer together which in turn helps them increase the capacity of the network. But it also means to cover the fringe areas takes a significant amount of money due to the weaker propagation. In relation to the actual wattage outputs of the phone and the base station, both technologies are bad at distance and propagation withen structures. The only way one carrier will be better than another in areas is simple, it's whomever spends the money.
     
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  29. chuikov

    chuikov Senior Member
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    This may be true - I only understand it up to the diplexers:rolleyes: . Well, maybe up to the TMAs.

    Anyway, I wish Sprint/Nextel good luck.

    The biggest problems won't be technical or construction, they will be site acquisition and/or engineering. The tower ownership problem has alraedy been covered pretty well.

    Structural capacity will be a problem. Many existing towers can simply not support additional loading in terms of cables or antennas. Very common problem.

    Zoning will also be a problem.

    Just because a cell site alraedy exists doesn't mean you can expand it at will.

    For example: Many times in my experience, a cell tower gets built, and a municipality doesn't like it, so they amend their ordinance and/or zoning map. After that, any addition to that tower or compound then becomes an "expansion of a non-conforming use".

    The decision is subject to the whims of 'the Borough' or wherever you happen to be...

    I won't even get into the complications involved in amending leases for new equipment or new frequencies.

    It gets to be more complicated than customers, marketing people, construction people or techincal people tend to realise.
     
  30. larry

    larry Sprint loyalist and former mod
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    It really depends on the City or County who's in charge. Some cities do not require a public hearing to add antennas/equipment to an existing tower. But of course some do.
     

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