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Verizon purchases Alltel for $28 billion

The rumors started making their rounds yesterday, and this morning it was announced. Verizon Wireless has agreed to purchase Alltel for roughly $28 billion. This comes less than a year after two venture capital groups finalized their purchase of Alltel. Once this deal passes through the FCC, and likely the Department of Justice, the new company will become the No. 1 cellular carrier in the United States, with over 80 million subscribers total. AT&T, the current leader, has over 70 million customers. Of course, this has looming implications for the companies’ respective prepaid services.

Most people have to be hoping that Verizon maintains both brands. Alltel is quite popular in some regions of the country, consistently scoring high on customer service and satisfaction surveys. Verizon scores well, too.

However, if the companies combine, that means bye-bye to the popular My Circle plans from Alltel. More relevant to our subject matter, it also means bye-bye to Alltel’s favorable prepaid plans. I’m sure plenty of U Prepaid customers wouldn’t be too satisfied having to switch to INpulse.

Those details could be far off, though. Plenty has to happen to close this deal.