Not long after the completion of the Cricket purchase by AT&T which included all necessary approvals as well as some divestitures, the new president of the brand has detailed the brand’s future, with an emphasis on price competition in the flat-rate prepaid sector.
As previously reported, AT&T plans to merge the current Aio Wireless infrastructure with the existing Cricket brand and customers will begin to see visible changes in the next 2-3 months, with the president elaborating on how customers on Cricket’s CDMA network will be transitioned to AT&T’s GSM network:
“For existing Cricket customers, there’s nothing they need to do now. But we’re going to be reaching out to them individually via text message to let them know when they can start to visit the stores to look at the new offering.”
The new Cricket also plans to maintain all of its current corporate bases while it works out the specifics of its integration plans. No immediate changes to service are expected and all agreements are expected to be honored until the 18 month period ends. Cricket is expected to offer customers on the CDMA network substantially cheaper handsets as part of the transition, with many expected to be offered for nearly free. Currently, while Cricket serves 4.5 million customers on its now deprecated CDMA network, many of those customers are expected to move to other carriers as the transition gets underway.
Another issue is the fate of Cricket’s R&D division, which is based in the Denver suburb of Greenwood Village. The division is responsible for the development of Cricket’s Muve Music mobile music streaming and purchase service, but executives have so far remained quiet on its future, as AT&T currently offers the competing Beats Music service and Cricket had recently licensed Muve Music to the Brazilian subsidiary of Italian mobile carrier TIM before the completion of the purchase by AT&T.