LightSquared got a nasty Valentine from the FCC yesterday: a ban on deploying its proposed 4G LTE network due to the interference it would cause with GPS satellite systems. The FCC revoked its conditional approval for the network that it originally gave last year, after the results came back from tests conducted by a national engineering group.
Sprint had originally planned to work together with LightSquared as it built out its own 4G LTE network, but after lots of hurdles – and patience on Sprint's end – it is likely that Sprint will drop its partnership with the troubled company. However, Sprint has yet to comment officially on its plans going forward.
Luckily, Sprint is already well on its way to deploying its own 4G LTE network, having learned its lesson with Clearwire. LightSquared would have been a great help, obviously, but I think that Sprint will still be able to manage without them. Still, the true test will be later this year, when Sprint's new network officially goes live.
Will Sprint keep up with its aggressive roll out schedule, and will the new LTE network be up to par? Only time will tell.[New York Times]