The merger of Sprint and T-Mobile has been approved.

Southern District of New York judge, Victor Marrero, has approved the T-Mobile/Sprint merger, anticipated to become the strongest 5G network in the country, paving the way for the companies to combine and promising to reshape the U.S. wireless market in the global race for 5G.

After nearly two years in regulatory limbo, the $26 billion merger between the No. 3 and No. 4 wireless carriers would have more than 126 million customers, bringing it closer to rivals AT&T (141 million subscribers) and Verizon (150 million). The merger could also mean an improvement in overall 5G wireless technology, according to, which promises greater, more pervasive connectivity and faster speeds, but which involves costly and complicated development efforts.

Android Center adds that while the judge’s conditions for the approval have not been shared, the ruling isn’t expected to dramatically alter the core tenets of the Department of Justice’s demands to the two companies, whereby Sprint would sell Boost Mobile, its largest prepaid subsidiary, to Dish Network, and T-Mobile would be required to provide unfettered MVNO access to Dish for seven years as the satellite company builds out its own 5G network. The merger announcement comes just months before T-Mobile CEO John Legere is set to retire and pave the way for Mike Sievert, the company’s current President and COO.

Sarah Krouse from The Wall Street Journal reports that the major deal comes with short-term pledge to keep prices low, but some customers face major changes to their service.