Verizon Wireless, Leap Wireless swap spectrum

Leap said its goal was to bolster its coverage in Chicago. For Verizon, the arrangement gives it more spectrum to squeeze AT&T.

Verizon Wireless and Leap Wireless announced a spectrum swap as carriers wheel and deal for network capacity.

Under the deal, Leap Wireless will acquire 12 Mhz of 700 Mhz A block spectrum in Chicago for $204 million. Verizon will acquire excess spectrum in various markets around the U.S. for $188 million.

A Leap venture---Savary Island Wireless---will also sell spectrum to Verizon for $172 million.

The arrangement comes just a few days after Verizon Wireless acquired wireless spectrum from cable providers to bolster its coverage. The Verizon deal with the cable companies was a nice countermove to AT&T, which needs spectrum if its T-Mobile purchase ultimately falls apart.

Leap said its goal was to bolster its coverage in Chicago. For Verizon, the arrangement gives it more spectrum to squeeze AT&T.

Also: Verizon Wireless' master stroke and the spectrum crunch ahead | Verizon boosting network after major purchase from Comcast, Time Warner | AT&T lashes out at opponents following latest FCC report | Clearwire inks new network deal with Sprint | CNET: Verizon’s $3.6 billion spectrum deal: Who wins and who loses?