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  • AT&T Bid For T-Mobile Won't Be an Easy Sell to FCC


    On Thursday, The Wall Street Journal delved deeper into the hot button issue of AT&T's proposed purchase of T-Mobile, a move that, if approved, would effectively reducing competition in the mobile industry and slash the number of major US carriers to just three. Speaking with the publication yesterday, an anonymous official at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) expressed pessimism about the proposal, saying that the chances of AT&T convincing the FCC chairman to sanction its planned $39 billion purchase of T-Mobile USA are not necessarily great.

    "There's no way the chairman's office rubber-stamps this transaction. It will be a steep climb to say the least," the FCC official tells the Wall Street Journal. AT&T, on the other hand, is putting forward a very confident public face, offering one sanguine comment after the next about the pending deal. "We understand that Congress, the DOJ, the FCC, as well as wireless consumers will have questions about the transaction. We look forward to answering and addressing those questions," said AT&T spokesman Michael Balmoris. "We are confident that the facts will demonstrate that the deal is in the public interest and that competition will continue to flourish."

    But just this past Tuesday, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski reiterated his agency's commitment "to encouraging a competitive marketplace." "While we're still working through details of a data-roaming framework, I believe the core proposition is beyond dispute: healthy competition produces greater innovation and investment, lower prices, and better service," Genachowski said, although neither he or his fellow FCC commissioners have formally commented on the record about AT&T's proposed takeover.

    If AT&T has its druthers, it will acquire T-Mobile and consequently become the largest wireless carrier in the nation with a whopping estimated 130 million subscribers. Given the shear magnitude of that possible reality, many industry analysts believe it could take up to a year for the FCC to reach an ultimate decision on the pending deal.

    Source: Wall Street Journal
    This article was originally published in forum thread: AT&T Bid For T-Mobile Won't Be an Easy Sell to FCC started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 41 Comments
    1. delusion950's Avatar
      delusion950 -
      I hooe it get denied
    1. BSmith's Avatar
      BSmith -
      If a company wants to sell, and another company wants to buy, what is the problem?

      It's not like we have a God given right (nor Federal/state) to have cellphones. If they jack the prices up you can vote with your checkbook. I gave up XM radio for that reason.
    1. delusion950's Avatar
      delusion950 -
      I think the FCC would rather have T-Mob as an option instead of At&t, VZ and Sprint.
    1. RICO_'s Avatar
      RICO_ -
      Awesome. In a year (when the FCC makes their decision) my contract will be finished and I will get to decide whether or not to ditch AT&T if they raise their prices with this merger.
    1. delusion950's Avatar
      delusion950 -
      Quote Originally Posted by RICO_ View Post
      Awesome. In a year (when the FCC makes their decision) my contract will be finished and I will get to decide whether or not to ditch AT&T if they raise their prices with this merger.
      ATT not to make it too obvious about price change will offer cheaper plans by .99 so you can say "My plan is $58.99 instead of 59.99".
    1. midgetadam's Avatar
      midgetadam -
      Quote Originally Posted by delusion950 View Post
      ATT not to make it too obvious about price change will offer cheaper plans by .99 so you can say "My plan is $58.99 instead of 59.99".
      That would be a full $1.
    1. KBI2113's Avatar
      KBI2113 -
      Quote Originally Posted by midgetadam View Post
      That would be a full $1.
      Winning
    1. ODB25's Avatar
      ODB25 -
      ^Lol
    1. bignighttrain's Avatar
      bignighttrain -
      It's looking like a quiet take over not tmobile selling it's company but apple telling them your going to sell your company for billions and were buying. I think AT&T is trying to hold it's spot in the market, Clear is offering unlimited data to your home and a 3/4G wireless mobile hotspot to take with you on the go for $50.00 a month & the phone companies vs the cable companies. Were all stuck for at least 2 years until the mobile Data wars are over..
    1. vantheman169's Avatar
      vantheman169 -
      Quote Originally Posted by midgetadam View Post
      That would be a full $1.
      Beat me too it! lol i was gonna say umm 59.99 - .99 = 59.00 Lmaoo too funny and i thought i sucked at math.
    1. Yonodactyl's Avatar
      Yonodactyl -
      Oh no..
    1. feidhlim1986's Avatar
      feidhlim1986 -
      It would give At&t a monopoly on the GSM networks in the U.S.
      I would be surprised to see a regulator allow this merger, but money talks...
    1. vantheman169's Avatar
      vantheman169 -
      Hope this merger does not happen either.
    1. mhtruth's Avatar
      mhtruth -
      Great! maintain the 2 gsm carriers vs. the 2 cdma carriers... I prefer my phones unlocked, sim card friendly, and world capable.
    1. thetoothfairy's Avatar
      thetoothfairy -
      I feel sorry for the peeps that didn't get in before the unlimited data plans stopped. I think the bad thing about this all is Verizon knows it can't compete against AT&T.
    1. ZipZapp's Avatar
      ZipZapp -
      Gee the FTC approved the XM SIRIUS deal, didn't they...leaving no competition.
    1. moon#pie's Avatar
      moon#pie -
      Quote Originally Posted by ZipZapp View Post
      Gee the FTC approved the XM SIRIUS deal, didn't they...leaving no competition.
      Regular radio and HD radio. Satellite radio sucks anyway.
    1. ("\(.:...:.)/")~RaWr's Avatar
      ("\(.:...:.)/")~RaWr -
      I hope the people in charge of making decisions in the FCC had a childhood. A good one too.
      Don't understand? Let me explain:



      And in case your favourite scifi shows haven't given you enough warning. Take a look at what will become of Carly, the T-Mobile lady in the ads:



      Need I say more?
    1. delusion950's Avatar
      delusion950 -
      Quote Originally Posted by midgetadam View Post
      That would be a full $1.
      Yep that's the crap you'll get from Att.
    1. cmwade77's Avatar
      cmwade77 -
      Quote Originally Posted by RICO_ View Post
      Awesome. In a year (when the FCC makes their decision) my contract will be finished and I will get to decide whether or not to ditch AT&T if they raise their prices with this merger.
      If the merger goes through, everyone on T-Mobile will have the option to end their contract without paying an ETF.

      By the way, I sent the following letter to the heads of T-Mobile and AT&T and sent a copy to the head of the FCC:

      We are long standing T-Mobile customers and we have been reading about your proposed merger with AT&T and I have to say that if you do go through with the merger we will be moving our service elsewhere, here is why:
      At work we have AT&T Wireless for our iPhones and the customer service is the worst that I have seen with ANY company.
      In addition, the parent AT&T company is terrible about responding to problems with our internet. We do use a third party provider, but have even tried using them directly and they have always taken 2-3 days to come out to fix anything, not something that is good in a business environment and not something that I will put up with in a cellular carrier personally.
      Prices go up on the new carrier’s plans.
      Customer Service always reverts to the lowest common denominator (in this case AT&T).
      The cell towers get even more overloaded than they already were, because ehty are now handling a combined amount of traffic, unfortunately, the combined traffic doesn’t spread out equally over the both carrier’s towers.

      Additionally, cell phone company mergers have always been bad for consumers, between my wife and I, we have been through four cell phone company mergers, the claims are always the same:
      Your existing equipment will continue to work with the new service
      Your existing sim card (when applicable) will continue to work
      Your existing plan will be honored

      The results are also always the same:
      Your equipment does continue to work, but only on the old cell towers, never on the new company’s towers. In addition, after a while mechanisms are put into place (intentionally or not) that prevent the old equipment from holding on more than a 5 minute conversation wnithout dropping calls. This ends up forcing you to buy a new phone to continue to properly use the service.
      You existing sim does much the same thing.
      Your existing plan is only honored until you buy a new phone or have to get a new sim card.

      We have remained loyal to T-Mobile over these years for the following reasons:
      Customer service goes far above and beyond that of other carriers (especially AT&T, whose customer service ranks as the worst customer service of any company that I have dealt with and I have dealt with some pretty bad ones)
      Prices are extremely competitive, not only on the plans, but on the phones, even without a contract
      Coverage is usually about 30% better than AT&T in the places that we go. (Same location, T-Mobile will have service and AT&T will not)
      Even when AT&T does have coverage, about 20% of the time, I cannot make a call or use data. Data is especially bad for AT&T at Disneyland (a place that we frequent a lot, so this is extremely important)

      Please be aware that there are many out there that feel much the same way, look at the comments on the articles on iphonehacks.com, modmyi.com, iphonefreakz.com, macrumors.com, zdnet.com

      Also, as I am sure you are already aware, if the merger does go through, your customers will legally be allowed to terminate their contracts without paying any ETF, due to a substantial change in the contract. (In this case changing the company who the contract is with).

      As you can see, a merger with AT&T would be a bad deal for the consumer overall, a copy this email is also being sent to the head of the FCC to oppose the proposed merger.

      The email address for the heads of AT&T and T-Mobile are:
      [email protected] (CEO's Assistant, but is the most relevant address I could find)
      [email protected]
      [email protected]

      To send an email to the head of the FCC, you need to use the following website:
      Send E-mail to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski

      All of this information is quite easily obtainable from a Google search, so I have no problems putting the email addresses and link in my comments.