FCC: AT&T/T-Mobile Merger 'Not in the public interest'

bradl

macrumors 601
Original poster
Jun 16, 2008
4,029
11,945
Surprised no-one has caught this one yet.

Various sources (NPR, USA Today, BGR, etc.) are reporting that the FCC has joined along with the Dept. of Justice in stating that the proposed AT&T/T-Mobile merger would be against the best interests of the public, and request a full administrative hearing with all three commissioners. Unfortunately, this hearing will not begin until after the lawsuit between the DoJ and AT&T/T-Mobile concludes, in which trial starts in February.

This is a rather big blow to the proposed $39 billion merger, which the only separation of concentration each company has is Omaha, Nebraska, where T-Mobile doesn't operate its network. Where this puts the merger now remains to be seen.
 

ap3604

macrumors 68000
Jan 11, 2011
1,929
0
Money controls the world my friend...

Everyone (even the DoJ, commisioners, and the FCC) has a price where they say "screw the common good! I wanna get PAID!" ;)
 

macinnv

macrumors regular
Jan 17, 2011
223
0
Phoenix, AZ
The merger is looking more and more like it won't go through. Once the DoJ trial goes through then an FCC trial. It will get stalled by the govt by any means possible.
 

KPOM

macrumors P6
Oct 23, 2010
15,313
3,706
This was entirely expected as the DOJ had announced its objection. It remains to be seen what happens. At the very least, it delays the merger, but AT&T and T-Mobile are fighting the DOJ and plan to take the issue to court.

From my perspective, T-Mobile has lots of unused capacity, is bleeding customers, and has difficulty attracting phones (since it has an unusual frequency band in the US). AT&T had planned to use T-Mobile's AWS band to expand its LTE network, freeing up some of its 3G spectrum in the process.

If the merger doesn't go through, there is no other obvious buyer. Verizon would face the same anti-trust issues. Sprint has an incompatible network, and is still struggling to integrate Nextel. The regional carriers are all CDMA. Deutsche Telekom really has no interest in building up T-Mobile USA since it has been a money pit for them. What might happen is that they would wind down their operations and sell off their spectrum and towers piecemeal.
 
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