Sprint is taking over full control of more than 100 stores it previously shared joint ownership of with Dixons Carphone.
Sprint in February 2016 announced a deal with Dixons to expand its distribution presence via a joint venture to open 500 new branded retail locations. Sprint is now taking over a fraction of those locations, but will continue to utilize Dixon Carphone’s retail platform.
“Sprint is assuming full ownership of more than 100 stores currently operated by Sprint Connect, a joint venture with Dixons Carphone. This partnership achieved its objective of accelerating Sprint’s retail transformation. We thank the team at Dixons Carphone and look forward to leveraging their innovative platform across Sprint stores as we to continually enhance our customer experience,” Sprint’s Omnichannel Sales President Kevin Crull said. “We are rapidly expanding our retail footprint to serve the high demand for the Sprint value proposition. There will be no disruption in Sprint Connect store operations and they will remain staffed by the retail teams currently working to serve our customers in these locations.”
The news comes on the heels of Sprint’s announcement this week that it’s opening 60 new stores and adding more than 450 new jobs in New England over the next 18 months. More on that here.
Verizon is adding two more LTE connected smartwatches to its lineup: Samsung Gear S3 frontier and the Gear S3 classic. The Gear S3 is the first smartwatch in Verizon’s pantry that will be compatible with its NumberShare feature, which lets customers use their mobile number on up to five connected devices.
Both the Gear S3 frontier and the Gear S3 classic are now available in Verizon stores nationwide for $399.99, and will soon be available online. Customers also have the option to buy the smartwatches for $349.99 with a two-year activation. The devices can be added to an existing Verizon Plan for $5 monthly access, plus taxes and fees.
The Competitive Carriers Association (CCA) once again called on the Federal Communications Commission to address cell siting fees related to historic review processes. The group said small and rural carriers frequently encounter extra costs and delays related to Tribal Nation participation in the historic review, and indicated addressing exorbitant Tribal review fees will promote both rural and urban next-generation wireless infrastructure deployment.
“CCA members are civic-minded and care about the communities and historic properties within their coverage areas, however many competitive carriers face significant challenges and onerous fees when trying to work with the National Historic Preservation process to deploy wireless infrastructure. Siting fees are increasing every year, sometimes reaching tens of thousands of dollars per project, and the current environment requires competitive carriers and siting applicants to pay even though these fees are not mandated under the NHPA or the FCC’s rules,” CCA CEO Steven Berry commented. “This costly and inefficient process slows deployment, is unsustainable and certainly will harm wireless deployment efforts in urban and rural America. Policymakers at the FCC and Congress must act to find the proper balance between protecting historic and religious Tribal areas and creating a predictable, clear siting application approvals process.”
The FCC recently advanced a measure that would streamline small cell siting. More on that here.
Nokia has reportedly concluded lay-off talks in Finland, confirming to Reuters Friday it plans to cut 170 jobs in the country. The talks were initiated last month. Nokia at the time said it was prepared to cut up to 200 positions as part of ongoing cost-cutting efforts.
The cuts come on the heels of a first quarter report from Nokia in which revenues continued to drop. They add to reductions made last year. In April 2016, reports surfaced indicating Nokia was planning to cut 1,300 jobs from its offices across Finland, 400 positions in France, and 1,400 jobs in Germany. The timeline for those cuts was scheduled to take place between 2016 and 2018, the company indicated.