United States Cellular Corporation (USM), a subsidiary of
Telephone and Data Systems Inc. (TDS)
has launched its latest free offering of "Wi-Fi Now" that connects
to any Wi-Fi hotspots. In collaboration with California based
Wi-Fi Offload Company, Devicescape, U.S. Cellular developed this
free application to provide its customers with fast Wi-Fi
connectivity and accessibility that can be used anywhere and
anytime on their smartphones and tablets.
Apart from Wi-Fi Now, U.S. Cellular offers other value added
services to its customers that help them manage their data usage
and assess exact data plan for their needs. Over the company's
website, customers may find tools like data estimator, data
tracking on My Account that will assist them to analyze their data
Further, the company has also dedicated one web page to help
customers monitor data usage. U.S. Cellular also launched data
overage alerts, besides its existing free voice and text Overage
The company's product offerings are supported by its advanced
high-speed nationwide network that ensures improved wireless
experience for its customers.
U.S. Cellular is looking forward to data services expansion by
incorporating the 4G LTE technology. In March this year, the
company rolled out its first LTE services in Iowa, Wisconsin,
Maine, North Carolina, Texas and Oklahoma. Further, it plans to
cover an additional 3,600 cities by the second half of the year.
Overall, the company expects approximately 54% of its subscriber
base under 4G LTE coverage by the year-end.
Going forward, U.S. Cellular completed a spectrum swap with
Verizon Communications in September last year that provided U.S.
Cellular eighteen 700 MHz spectrum licenses covering eight states-
Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oregon and
Washington. In exchange, the company provided Verizon with two
10MHz PCS licenses covering two states - Illinois and Indiana.
Besides supporting the LTE technology, the spectrum swap is
expected to enhance network capacity along with improvements in
voice and data services in U.S. Cellular's existing markets.
In order to offer competitive services to customers, the company
continues to invest in constructing new cell sites, increasing
capacity in existing cell sites and switches, upgrading technology,
developing new and enhancing existing office systems, as well as
constructing new and remodeling existing retail stores. To support
capital intensive network development, U.S. Cellular maintained its
capital expenditure projection of approximately $850 million for
Although these developments would be accretive to the company's
profitability over the long term, we apprehend that heavy capital
expenditures may prove detrimental to its financial position in the
near term. Furthermore, a competitive market, intense pricing and
regulatory pressures can further forestall the company's near-term
We have a long-term Neutral recommendation for U.S. Cellular
Corporation. Currently, the stock holds a Zacks #3 Rank, implying a
short-term Hold rating.
TELEPHONE &DATA (TDS): Free Stock Analysis
US CELLULAR (USM): Free Stock Analysis Report
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