This item , which reports that Sprint is basically outsourcing its network operations to Ericsson, is interesting. Given their challenges in the wireless industry, Sprint is innovating in business models. First we see the 4G deal with Clearwire. Now we see this deal. So, Sprint has kept some of its strategy (though it has limited control over this in the 4G space due to the Clearwire deal). It has kept its capital investment and spectrum. And, it keeps control over the brand and the customer interface. I also assume that they keep some degree of control over network engineering, though that begins to but up against operations in some cases.
Also interesting to me is that they laud Ericssons expertise, which it undoubtedly has in GSM networks. How does that translate to Sprint's CDMA/WiMAX combo?
This will be interesting to watch. It could portend a shift in the industry.