More than half a million U.S. Cellular telephone customers will be forced to purchase new phones when the company completes its sale to Sprint.
Roughly 585,000 users from Chicago to St. Louis will have phones that do not work on the Sprint Network, officials with U.S. Cellular told the Chicago Tribune.
The sale of U.S. Cellular is expected to be completed over the next few weeks. Current subscribers have already been notified about the pending requirement, and company leaders say Sprint will offer a transition period for users to decide whether they want to stay with the company.
Despite carrying similar products, phones are designed with circuitry tailored for each carrier specifically. So a Galaxy S 3 from U.S. Cellular will not work with Sprint.