US wireless customer base: Cingular – 50 mln, Verizon – 43 mln, Sprint – 40 mln

Standard & Poor’s claims 4 nationwide wireless operators will serve close to 85% of the US wireless subscriber base. Cingular Wireless has the top spot with 50 mln of the industry’s 180 mln wireless subscribers. Verizon Wireless is #2 with more than 43 mln subscribers, followed by the combined operations of Sprint and Nextel serving approximately 40 mln customers. T-Mobile USA is #4 with more than 17 mln subscribers. AllTel Wireless currently has 10 mln customers and will acquire Western Wireless and US Cellular with their 5 mln subscribers.