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Sprint gives LightSquared final extension for FCC approval, will end partnership in March without it

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LightSquared has received a final six-week extension from Sprint as it seeks FCC approval for its proposed wholesale LTE network that has drawn numerous GPS interference concerns. The agreement between the two will dissolve in mid-March barring any progress.

Sprint LightSquared slide
Sprint LightSquared slide

It turns out 30 extra days wasn't enough: despite the extension Sprint granted LightSquared earlier this month, LightSquared remains embroiled in a lengthy FCC approval process for its proposed wholesale LTE network. Yet as it turns out, Dan Hesse and Co. have a bit more patience to spare: Sprint has announced that it is giving LightSquared one final six-week reprieve to overcome GPS interference concerns and get Washington's permission to proceed. Should the outlook fail to change come mid-March, the carrier will renege on a 15-year partnership that was originally intended to serve as an important element of its "Network Vision" nationwide LTE rollout. It would seem that it's truly now or never for LightSquared. Keep in mind that public comments are now being accepted by the FCC, so this would seem an appropriate time for the company to rally supporters if it hopes to have a viable path forward.