Sprint's two-month deal for exclusive discussions with the cable companies puts Sprint's merger talks with T-Mobile on hold, the newspaper reported, citing unidentified sources described as familiar with the matter. The discussions could include the possibility of the cable companies taking an equity stake in Sprint, the report said.
The cable companiesin May to compete with other giants on providing wireless services. Comcast and Charter hope their combined size will help them to negotiate better contracts that in turn would mean they can provide their customers with more choice, more products and more competitive prices.
The two companies already have agreements in place with Verizon that let them resell its wireless services in their respective regions.
The talks could upend reported merger efforts between Sprint and T-Mobile.reported in May that executives from Sprint's parent, SoftBank, and T-Mobile's parent, Deutsche Telekom, have also been in "informal contact" about a deal to consolidate.
Charter and Sprint declined to comment, while Comcast didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.