Sprint Won’t ‘Rip and Replace’ Towers

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After releasing fiscal third quarter results yesterday, Sprint management acknowledged it has no plans to undo – or “rip and replace” as it is being called — its extensive network building that began in earnest in 2013. But it was also no surprise that the company is focused on a strategy to find less expensive alternatives to network improvements. The company said it would explore new, lower cost possibilities as current lease contracts unwind. Most master lease agreements with American Tower Corp., Crown Castle and SBA Communications continue through 2016.

“We are focused on densification, without jeopardizing the customer network,” Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure said. “We’ll look at towers, rooftops, and monopoles and then choose the most efficient way to plan. Everything will make the network more dense. By no means is this rip and replace.”

Claure said Sprint will be “very opportunistic in optimizing antennae on lower cost infrastructure [such as] macro sites and public sites for similar or better performance at lower cost,” according to Computer World.

The company is “well aware” of its existing contractual arrangements with tower companies, which usually last five to seven years, Computer World noted. “We’re not exiting existing leases today,” Chief Technology Officer John Saw said Sprint is he added. “We’ll have strategic relationships with tower companies for many years to come and will continue to be a strategic partner.”

January 27, 2016 |
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