We'll Hang On To T-Mobile USA, Thanks

Deutsche Telekom chairman Kai-Uwe Ricke has quelled earlier speculation that the company was looking to sell off T-Mobile USA, confirming it will keep the unit and look to grab more spectrum in auctions next year. Ricke says investors reacted negatively to the idea of selling the US business, which isn’t surprising as its success has been a key driver of growth for T-Mobile for some time. T-Mobile is really under the gun to grab significant spectrum, as it simply doesn’t have enough to launch 3G. Its EDGE network is only now coming online, when its CDMA rivals are rolling out EV-DO and Cingular is working on its UMTS/HSDPA network. For what it’s worth, though, T-Mobile has almost positioned itself as a discount carrier in the US, with cheap voice plans, rather than high-speed data, its calling card, so the company may not be in as big a hurry to get 3G as perhaps some of its customers might like.

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