July 11, 2013

Sprint acquires Clearwire, keeps looking forward

Earlier this week, mobile carrier Sprint announced that it had completed its acquisition of Clearwire, which is a wireless broadband services provider. Previously, Sprint owned half of Clearwire but had intentions to eventually acquire the entire company.

According to a Tech Spot article, this opportunity will allow Sprint to offer faster download speeds across the entire United States. Additionally, the mobile world is growing increasingly competitive, with Verizon and AT&T improving their technologies. T-Mobile also strengthened its foothold with its own acquisition of MetroPCS.

The technology acquisition for Sprint will likely help it compete in other areas as well. GigaOM explained in a recent article that IBM and Sprint are working together to create cloud-powered services that link together mobile technology and automobiles.

Specifically, Sprint will use a management system for machine-to-machine (M2M) communications. Ideally, this can help the company design a smartphone that could turn into a remote for a car, even unlocking a vehicle and starting its engine from another location. With cloud technology, the mobile company hopes to also store diagnostic information, driver preferences and then put it to use across of variety in-vehicle and external apps.

Sprint VP of M2M Wayne Ward said in a recent interview with GigaOM that Sprint wants to supply the technology that makes whatever connectivity an automaker chooses meaningful.

"We're not naïve," Ward said. "We know everyone isn't going to take the whole package … But we know this world far better. We know mobility, we know billing, and we know how to make the whole thing work."

M&A activity has the potential to help companies in the short- and long-term. Technology acquisitions can ensure that both parties are given a chance to thrive and keep their customers happy.