DOJ investigating push-to-talk carriers

Feb 26 2004 - 05:15 PM ET | Push-to-talk
Push-to-talk (PTT) is a lucrative service for the few US carriers that offer it. Nextel had a monopoly until Verizon Wireless launched PTT service in August 2003. SprintPCS launched their service in November 2003 while ALLTEL waited until January 2004. Cingular and AT&T Wireless are said to be coming out with similar services soon. Despite the competition, the Department of Justice is investigating PTT. Motorola, Verizon Wireless and Nextel have all been asked to turn over records. Nextel filed a lawsuit over Verizon Wireless' PTT service in August 2003--just days after the rival's service launched. Verizon today sent out a press release to plead its case against Nextel getting a handout from the FCC. The spat over the FCC may have been what spurred the DOJ investigation.