Verizon Communications

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To hear CEO-in-waiting Lowell McAdam tell it, Verizon is about to “kick into a higher gear.” Why? Outgoing chief Ivan Seidenberg has invested heavily the past few years in next-generation broadband technologies such as FiOS, a high-speed fiber optic service, and LTE, a 4G wireless network.Combined with its growing video and cloud computing services, which should also get a boost from Verizon’s purchase of Terremark in January, these businesses now account for three-quarters of sales. Then of course there’s the iPhone, which Verizon began selling earlier this year. No wonder the communications giant shrugged off the planned union between AT&T and T-Mobile. —P.N.

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AT&T

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AT&T has taken a lot of heat about the quality of its wireless network. So much so, perhaps, that it recently agreed to pay $39 billion for T-Mobile USA — a smaller rival that once ran ads ridiculing AT&T’s service.The combined entity — which has yet to get past Washington’s antitrust watchdogs — would allow AT&T to spread the cost of running a national network over an additional 34 million customers.

Best of all: Adding T-Mobile’s spectrum and cell towers to the mix should do much to alleviate the massive congestion that has taxed AT&T’s existing infrastructure for years. —P.N.

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