Dish has been toying with the idea of becoming a proper carrier amid the merger of the century between T-Mobile and Sprint for quite a while. There were even some rumors that Google was on board with the satellite TV-provider, but they have since been denied by the search company. Bloomberg reports that Dish has agreed to buy wireless spectrum and prepaid businesses such as Boost Mobile from T-Mobile and Sprint as the Department of Justice closes in on approving the carrier merger.

With these new assets, Dish could shape up to become a disruptive force in the wireless market, albeit it in the face of competition from a new super-carrier. Bloomberg cites people familiar with the matter in reporting that Dish will pay roughly $1.5 billion for prepaid businesses and about $3.5 billion for additional wireless spectrum. The terms of the deal specify that Dish has to hold on to its purchases for at least three years.

This should appease the Department of Justice, which feared the merger could lead to a less competitive market and consequently rising prices and worse service for customers. With this new development, the DOJ is slated to approve the merger on Thursday. But even if it does, T-Mobile and Sprint could still face scrutiny by a group of state attorneys general arguing against the deal.

A look at Germany suggests that the merger and subsequent creation of a fourth provider could end up being beneficial to US customers. After the third- and fourth-largest German carriers joined forces in 2014, aggressive pricing led to tariffs being lowered across the board. Here's hoping for a similar outcome in the US.

Confirmed

The DOJ has announced approval for the T-Mobile-Sprint merger. As rumored, Dish is acquiring some assets from the new carrier, supposedly to make it a viable fourth carrier. Check out the full post for all the details.

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  • Moshe