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Expectations are that a deal between Sprint, T-Mobile and Dish Network will be announced within the next 48 hours, whereby Dish would pay around $3.5 billion for wireless spectrum from the two carriers to push through their merger.

Why it matters: In addition to America's mobile market no longer consolidating from four major national carriers to three, this could embolden top U.S. antitrust regulator Makan Delrahim, who looked to be on his heels after being handed his legal hat on the AT&T/Time Warner deal. This comes just as the Justice Department confirmed that it will launch an investigation into the power and behavior of online platforms.

  • Dish also would pay around $1.5 billion for a prepaid mobile business that the merging companies agreed to divest as part of an earlier FCC agreement, and pledge to hold all the acquired assets for at least three years.
  • There had been talk that Amazon had interest in the prepaid business. In general, Amazon just seems to have a tire-kicking fetish.

By the numbers: T-Mobile executives spent $195,000 at the Trump International Hotel after the company agreed to buy Sprint for $26 billion, as disclosed this past March — but DOJ was unswayed by all of those suite stays, let alone the companies' PR strategy of talking up Trump-bait like job growth and 5G leadership.

Between the lines: Elon Musk must be ready to take a flame-thrower to SEC social media regulators, given how John Legere appears to have skated for his misleading — and still available — tweet about DOJ objection to the original deal structure.

Go deeper: 5G is off to a slow start

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Health

India crosses 1 billion COVID vaccinations milestone

A health worker inoculates a COVID-19 vaccine dose to a man wearing a face mask of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Beawar, India, in September. Photo: Sumit Saraswat/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Thursday that the country's health workers have now administered more than 1 billion COVID-19 vaccines doses.

Of note: While this is a significant milestone for the country of 1.4 billion, which has been devastated by the coronavirus, only about 30% of the eligible population has been fully vaccinated against the virus, per AP. Roughly 75% has received at least one dose.

Trump says he plans to launch new social media network in 2022

Photo: Chris Delmas/AFP via Getty Images

Former President Trump on Wednesday announced plans to launch a social media network called "Truth Social," and that it would go public via a SPAC.

Why it matters: Most ex-presidents are focused on their legacies, by creating presidential libraries or engaging in philanthropic endeavors. Trump, however, remains consumed by social media.

Beauty giant Coty Cosmetics looking to sell its own branded products

Coty Cosmetics CEO Sue Nabi. Photo: Axios on HBO

Coty Cosmetics CEO Sue Nabi tells Axios the beauty giant will “probably” introduce Coty-branded products one day.

Why it matters: Coty produces some of the world’s most popular fragrances, skin care products and color cosmetics on behalf of other well-known brands, but has shied away from producing its own branded products.