The DOJ tells Dish and T-Mobile to investigate the migration of CDMA customers


The Department of Justice has “serious concerns” about the future closure of Sprint’s old CDMA network. fresh letter noticed Bloomberg, and urges both Dish Network and T-Mobile to take all necessary steps to further reduce the impact of reliable customers on the network. Many of Dish’s Boost Mobile customers — which it acquired from T-Mobile as a condition of the Sprint merger — will continue to rely on the older 3G network and lose their phone service when Un-operator shuts it down on January 1, 2022. a sore spot in increasingly difficult relationships between the two companies.

Dish shared this July 9 letter to Dish as part of its second-quarter financial records yesterday. Addressed to Dish Network and T-Mobile attorneys, it acknowledges that a network sunset could leave a significant number of Boost Mobile clients without telephone service. The DOJ reminds T-Mobile that it agreed to give Dish “reasonable advance notice” of the closure of the old network, even though it ceases to condemn T-Mobile’s timeline as unreasonable. In essence, the DOJ says it has to wait and see how things work to know if T-Mobile’s announcement was reasonable.

“It is not yet possible for the Division to determine whether the notification given on 1 January 2022 was reasonable for the closure of CDMA in the light of all the relevant facts and circumstances as they have not occurred. However, if DISH takes all reasonable steps to move its customers out of the CDMA network and a significant part is still left at the end of the period, this fact may well indicate that the notification was not sufficient. “

The DOJ is also not getting Dish off the hook, and says the company is also bound by the terms of the merger agreement to do its best to move Boost customers off the old network.

“… if DISH is unable to use all available means to prevent the loss of large-scale service to customers it has acquired pursuant to the final judgment, it may raise concerns about its own compliance.”

The letter ends with a neat request just to find out, or else.

“The Division therefore expects both parties to take all possible steps to ensure that Boost customers move out of the CDMA network before it is shut down. If any action related to the closure of the CDMA network indicates that the final judgment is likely to be violated, the division will promptly take all available remedies. “

At the same time, the two companies do not appear to be willing to cooperate. Mike Sievert, CEO of T-Mobile posted a blog post yesterday urged Dish to “pull his legs to get customers to upgrade to a superior 4G / 5G world.” When calling investors yesterday, Dish Chairman Charlie Ergen sounded more submissive when discussing the issue than a few months ago when he compared T-Mobile to the Grinch, this time calling the company “painful winners.” He says Dish will make every reasonable effort to relocate its customers, but he believes a “significant number” of them will lose their service on January 1st.

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