Abstract image representing the idea of circumventing or finding a loophole

Dish’s Legal Obligations & Ting’s Acquisition

In the leadup to the merger between T-Mobile and Sprint, Dish acquired Sprint’s prepaid subscribers and made a number of commitments to regulators. Among other obligations, Dish agreed to offer nationwide, postpaid service:1

DISH must offer nationwide postpaid retail mobile wireless service to American consumers within one year of the closing of the sale of the Prepaid Assets.

Peter Adderton, the original founder of Boost Mobile, brought Dish’s commitment up on Twitter:

Stephen Stokols, the CEO of Boost (now a Dish-owned company) pointed out that Dish met its commitment after acquiring Ting:


Technically, Stokols is right. Ting offers postpaid service, and it’s available nationwide.

I feel like Dish found a loophole. I’m guessing regulators perceived “nationwide postpaid” to be a proxy for something like “high-end service for the mass market.” Ting is a small-scale carrier that largely caters to budget-conscious consumers.

Footnotes

  1. The excerpt comes from paragraph II.C in the Stipulation and Order on the DOJ website. I removed some parenthetical content for clarity.

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