AT&T Wireless Services

Posted by thomas06 in Society on March 8th, 2018

AT&T Wireless Services, founded in 1987 as McCaw Cellular Communications, formerly part of AT&T Corp., was a wireless telephone carrier in the United States, based in Redmond, Washington, and later traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the stock symbol "AWE", as a separate entity from its former parent.

On October 26, 2004, AT&T Wireless was acquired by Cingular Wireless, a joint venture of SBC Communications and BellSouth, to form the largest wireless carrier in the United States at the time. On November 16, 2004, AT&T Wireless stores were rechristened under the Cingular banner. The legal entity "AT&T Wireless Services, Inc." was renamed "New Cingular Wireless Services, Inc."

In late 2005, SBC (the majority partner in Cingular) acquired the original AT&T, and rebranded as "the new AT&T". Cingular became wholly owned by the new AT&T in December 2006 as a result of the new AT&T's acquisition of BellSouth. After the merger, Cingular was renamed AT&T Mobility in early 2007 and remained the largest wireless carrier until 2009 when Verizon Wireless acquired Alltel to become the largest wireless service provider by number of subscribers.

McCaw Cellular

AT&T Wireless began in 1987 as McCaw Cellular Communications, a cellular telephone pioneer in the United States. Savvy licensing of cellular spectrum in the early 1980s put McCaw Cellular in an extremely strong position, quickly outpacing the growth of the "Baby Bells" in the emerging market. The company purchased MCI Communications's mobile businesses in 1986, followed by LIN Broadcasting in 1989, giving them widespread access in all of the major US markets. Partnering with AT&T as a technology provider, McCaw introduced their "Cellular One" service in 1990, the first truly national cellular system. AT&T purchased 33% of the company in 1992, and arranged a merger in 1994 that made Craig McCaw one of AT&T's largest shareholders. In 2002, the company was spun off from AT&T to become AT&T Wireless Services.

Cellular One

At this point McCaw's focus turned from dealing licenses to servicing the network, signing up customers in what was now a maturing technology on the cusp of explosive growth. In order to handle the customer side of the business, McCaw turned to AT&T for technology

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