Charter mulls AT&T MVNO deal, as user numbers grow - Mobile World Live

Charter mulls AT&T MVNO deal, as user numbers grow

12 MAY 2020

Charter Communications CEO Tom Rutledge revealed the cable operator held talks with AT&T about a potential MVNO deal, looking to move beyond an existing arrangement with Verizon as its mobile service rapidly expands.

During an investor conference, Rutledge said discussions with AT&T were held during negotiations for a string of recent pay-TV programming deals, but the MVNO talks “got very complex”.

However, he noted AT&T remained “interested in having a relationship with us” and vice-versa, suggesting a deal could yet be thrashed out.

Charter Communications currently offers its Spectrum Mobile service, including 5G capabilities, through an MVNO agreement with Verizon. It is unclear if an AT&T deal would add or replace this.

Earlier this year, AT&T COO John Stankey said it aimed to increase its mobile wholesale presence to drive new revenue.

Earnings
Talk of MVNO deal changes came as Charter Communication revealed Spectrum Mobile continued to rapidly add subscribers in Q1, with net additions of 290,000 compared with 176,000 in Q1 2019, for a total of 1.37 million at end-March.

Mobile revenue increased from $140 million to $258 million, but remained a fraction of the company’s $11.7 billion total, which increased 4.7 per cent.

Net income attributable to shareholders increased from $253 million to $396 million.

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Diana Goovaerts

Diana is Mobile World Live's US Editor, reporting on infrastructure and spectrum rollouts, regulatory issues, and other carrier news from the US market. Diana came to GSMA from her former role as Editor of Wireless Week and CED Magazine, digital-only...

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