AT&T is planning to purchase the leftovers of Alltel's network, including physical assets like towers, licenses, and 1.5 million subscribers from Alltel's new owner, Verizon, for the tasty sum of $2.35 billion.
In addition to the cash money, AT&T is going to toss in some assets from Centennial Communications, a wireless and broadband provider in the Dirty Dirty (South), which includes 120,000 subscribers, for $240 million. So it's sort of a trade, albeit a pretty lopsided one. Each of the newly acquired customers will have access to everything their new service provider has to offer, from mobile broadband to wireless hotspots.
Just to be clear, this is to the benefit of both companies. They're mostly just making sure there isn't much overlap in rural areas, where neither company can make all that much money. It's certainly not an indication that Verizon's in dire straights of any sort.
We're not totally sure how AT&T is going to work Alltel's CDMA service in with their own GSM: Seems like it'd be a real pain to convert all those customers over to their own service. We'll keep our Confederate readers up to date once AT&T announces what they plan to do with them. [Phonescoop]