"We'll work hard to make the transition as easy and convenient as possible," Gelinas said.
Alltel customers will need an AT&T phone when their service moves to the AT&T network, but will be able to keep their phone numbers after the transition is complete. The company will make the transition on a market-by-market basis over the next year.
Before completing network upgrades and moving to AT&T, Alltel contract customers will be informed on how to get new, free comparable phones -- or purchase an upgraded phone -- and how to activate those phones on the AT&T network.
Prepaid or no contract customers will have access to special offers for phones and rate plans during the transition.
Alltel customers should look for more information on the transition to AT&T in early 2014.
Gelinas said it was too early to know the impact on local Alltel stores or employees.
"For now, all store employees and dealers will operate business as usual," Gelinas said.
According to Alltel's website, there is one wireless Alltel store in
Customers may continue to add lines and upgrade devices during the transition period.
"Alltel customers will get access to a network that combines the strength of the local Alltel coverage with AT&T's nationwide 4G coverage, with data speeds up to 10 times what they have today," Gelinas said. "The work required to transition the wireless network and customer support systems from Alltel to AT&T has just begun and will take several months to complete."
While acknowledging the deal will "likely cause some competitive and other public interest harms in several local markets," the
Meanwhile, 75 percent of Alltel's users will be granted access to Long Term Evolution (LTE) services on AT&T's network within 18 months of closing, rising to 85 percent within 36.
"We welcome Alltel customers to the AT&T family, and we think they will love everything they can do on our superfast 4G network," said
Following network upgrades, Alltel will be rebranded as AT&T. All customers will also have an option to upgrade.
Alltel customers should verify their billing and email addresses are up to date by going to www.alltel.com/myaccount. For further information, customers are encouraged to visit www.att.com/Alltel for more information.
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