News by Andrew Kameka on Friday March 14, 2014.
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AT&T has received FCC approval to acquire Leap Wireless, the company that runs Cricket, and it's already off to a running start by merging its prepaid brands. AT&T launched Aio Wireless in 2013 as a low-cost prepaid MVNO operating on its network and it now owns Cricket, which was more established in the prepaid market. As such, Aio will be folded into "the new Cricket" and operate under the more recognized brand.
Existing Cricket customers will be able to use their current phones without doing anything. AT&T plans to eventually use the spectrum acquired from Leap to bolster its 4G LTE network, so customers will at some point need to alter their phones and plans. Aio Wireless customers will continue to be able to use their phones as they have done but they will transition to making payments to Cricket once the deal closes. Aio will continue to operate as a brand for several more months until the transition is completed.
Andrew is MobileBurn.com's managing editor. He is based in Miami, Florida.