Swedish equipment supplier Ericsson has announced that it has agreed a seven year contract with Sprint Nextel to manage and maintain the US cellco’s networks. The deal, valued between USD4.5 billion and USD5 billion, will see about 6,000 Sprint employees transferred to Ericsson. Under the agreement, Sprint will retain full ownership of its infrastructure and continue to deliver customer services while Ericsson will assume responsibility for the day-to-day operation and maintenance of the CDMA, iDEN and wireline networks.
Meanwhile, Sprint has also contracted Airvana to supply the cellco with its 3G ‘HubBub’ EV-DO Rev A femtocells until December 2014. Sprint has not yet said when it will introduce a 3G femtocell offering to the market.