NEW YORK — U.S. consumers and businesses are going to get more options in wireless service starting next year, with the launch of a new wireless broadband network that will provide competition to the incumbent phone companies.
Private-equity firm Harbinger Capital Partners on Tuesday revealed details of the launch of its wireless network, LightSquared, which aims to cover 92 percent of the population by 2015.
It's a rare new entrant in the wireless market. LightSquared plans to start providing service in the second half of 2011 in Las Vegas, Phoenix, Denver and Baltimore.
WHAT'S HAPPENING: A private-equity firm, Harbinger Capital Partners, is setting up a nationwide wireless broadband network. It will start next year in Las Vegas, Phoenix, Denver and Baltimore.
WHAT IT MEANS FOR CONSUMERS: If the new network, known as LightSquared, gets over some regulatory and financial hurdles, it could provide an alternative to those of the big phone companies — AT&T and Verizon Wireless.
WHY IT DOESN'T HAPPEN MORE OFTEN: Fresh, nationwide wireless spectrum is rare. LightSquared is repurposing spectrum originally intended for satellite telephones, and is still subject to some of the regulatory requirements for a satellite-based network.