We were all thrown for a loop when AT&T said it will buy T-Mobile for $39 billion and we knew it wouldn’t be too long before we heard Sprint gives its two cents about the deal Not surprisingly, the third-largest carrier isn’t happy with the deal and it is calling on regulators to take a close look on how this will impact innovation and competition in the wireless space.
Sprint said in the statement:
“The combination of AT&T and T-Mobile USA, if approved by the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Communications Commission (FCC), would alter dramatically the structure of the communications industry. AT&T and Verizon are already by far the largest wireless providers. A combined AT&T and T-Mobile would be almost three times the size of Sprint, the third largest wireless competitor. If approved, the merger would result in a wireless industry dominated overwhelmingly by two vertically-integrated companies that control almost 80% of the US wireless post-paid market, as well as the availability and price of key inputs such as backhaul and access needed by other wireless companies to compete. The DOJ and the FCC must decide if this transaction is in the best interest of consumers and the US economy overall, and determine if innovation and robust competition would be impacted adversely and by this dramatic change in the structure of the industry.”
We’ve already briefly examined Sprint’s options in the face of an AT&T-Mobile with more than 120 million subscribers and things aren’t looking great. Still, there are opportunities to carve out market shares with things like truly unlimited data plans, which are becoming rare in the high-end mobile data game.
What do you think of what Sprint is saying? Do you think it is making good points or does this just sound like whining from a company that hasn’t been able to gain much traction over the last few years?