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Cable Technology Feature Article

September 23, 2010

Clearwire May See a Murky Horizon

By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor

For those who were hoping for another Comcast (News - Alert) investment in Clearwire, it looks like it won’t be coming anytime soon. According to a blog in the Wall Street Journal, Chief Financial Officer of Comcast, Michael Angelakis (News - Alert), the cable giant is not likely to increase its current investment in Clearwire.

This mobile-broadband provider has long been referred to as an important of Comcast’s wireless strategy. Comcast currently owns 9 percent of Clearwire, Sprint Nextel (News - Alert) owns 54 percent and Intel, Google and Time Warner Cable also hold stakes in the company.

Even as Comcast has boasted about its Clearwire investments, tempers have been running high regarding the strategic direction the mobile-broadband provider wants to take. This has led to questions regarding the company’s next round of financing.

 “Clearwire (News - Alert) has to figure this out,” Angelakis shared at an investor conference in New York.

Sprint’s CFO recently shared that Sprint is not the right candidate to buy the remaining Clearwire shares. It is also unlikely that Sprint will seek control of the company anytime soon.

Clearwire unveiled in August a new prepaid 4G mobile-broadband service. While Sprint would rather have Clearwire focus on expanding its 4G, it has had to settle for other options. Sprint’s offering is growing, but is still not completely available in places such as New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

In other Comcast news, the company announced in June that they will be delivering the 2010 FIFA World Cup matches live in its entirety, live games in 3D from ESPN (News - Alert) 3D, games On Demand the next day and online coverage with live games and the latest news. 

This week, the company announced that it will be the official technology sponsor for ArtPrize, the world's largest art competition open to any artist who can find space in Grand Rapids. The citywide exhibit, which is open to the public and free of charge, begins September 22 and ends on October 10, with members of the public selecting the winning art through online voting.

In Clearwire news, TMCnet reported that the company has rolled out super fast wireless broadband service, 4G, in Richmond, announcing that now anyone in the area can use the internet at speeds four times faster than 3G. Its 4G service, nicknamed as CLEAR, covers more than 350 square miles and more than 530,000 people in the Richmond metro area, enabling people to access high speed internet wherever they want –– whether at home, in the office, or on the go.

Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Erin Monda