T-Mobile, AT&T deal screwing more people over

You didn’t think you were the only ones potentially being screwed over by this whole T-Mobile and AT&T thing, did you? The deal between the two wireless operators had us focused on the potential outcomes for customers, but we’ve just been reminded that their employees are going to be seriously affected, too.

The Wall Street Journal reported that out of the 9,200 AT&T and T-Mobile stores nationwide, 41 percent of these stores are within one mile of each other. This creates a problem because, if the FCC approves this deal, some stores will have to be closed. That means you’re out of luck if you own one of the selected stores.

AT&T’s interest in T-Mobile is purely for its resources. The deal means the towers that once carried T-Mobile data would help AT&T improve its network. Sadly, some of the stores that once sold T-Mobile phones and service will not get the chance to be a part of the new company.

This is not the worst news, “[T-Mobile store owners] aren’t allowed to communicate with AT&T about store planning while regulators are considering the deal. A decision is expected in early 2012.”

Now this T-Mobile deal is affecting the consumers, the retailers and the people who will lose jobs and building owners who will lose clients. The WSJ report added that if this deal happens, retail store closures will be another hit that the economy doesn’t need.

A rash of store closings would be another headache for commercial landlords still digging out from store closings and bankruptcy filings by large retailers like Borders Group Inc., Circuit City and Linens ‘n Things. Outdoor strip malls, which are popular with wireless stores, have been particularly hard hit, with a 10.9% vacancy rate that is expected to rise to a 21-year peak this year, according to research firm Reis Inc.

There we go folks, more reasons why the FCC needs to think about this deal long and hard. Sprint, along with other companies, has stated that AT&T doesn’t need T-Mobile to continue their growth and they can still develop their network without T-Mobile’s spectrum.

I use T-Mobile and would hate for this to happen. If the deal does go through, I would consider switching to Verizon, whose phone selection and network strength are arguably better than that of T-Mobile. AT&T’s acquisition of T-Mobile doesn’t seem to offer much for current T-Mobile customers, except perhaps access to the iPhone. In terms of incentive for T-Mobile customers, it seems like the options are slim to none.

[Via:  WSJ, image]

  • Bigbusinesswinning

    Keep T-Mobile alive, write to your congress respresentative.

  • Noel

    There are other options for Att to develop its LTE without the use of Tmo towers. As a matter of fact Sprint gave them some ideas and with a portion of that 39 billion they could build more powerful towers and get more spectrum the next time FCC has a specrum auction. All i see behind this buy out is a move to gobble up a serious competitor with out regard of how drastically it will affect consumers who seek low budget plans and low unlimited plans. It is a long time since i had Att as my carrier…back then it was mostly talk n txt no data…but from what i have been reading from those who left recently, they could not stand the nickel n diming of customers and the bad customer service. From what i have seen comparing cellphone price offerings from the major four carriers..there is no way for $70 or $80 u could get and unlimited offering from Att similar to what Tmo is offering. Tmo doesn’t have to be the  #1 or #2 cellphone carrier but the 34 million or so customers like what they are getting for what they are paying for. It will be a step back for us consumers looking for low rate plans if this competition killer buy out is allowed to go through. This will be the first step on the road to a duopoly in the US cellphone market landscape….

  • I disagree on the Verizon phone aspect. If you are talking “Android” phones, some of the Verizon phones are nicer, but only if you like Motorola or Samsung. If you want a world phone, or a “4G” phone that doesnt suck the life out of its battery, then T-Mobile is definitely the clear winner, even over Sprint.

    In terms of network, T-Mobile’s 3G/4G is faster than Verizons 3G network by up to 10x faster in some areas. Strictly speaking from an Android 3G handset provision, Id rather have T-Mobiles prices, data speed, and the ability to select Motorola, Samsung, HTC, and LG as my phone, thats not even factoring in the ability to talk and surf the web at the same time. Something Verizon’s 3G phones cant do.

  • Anonymous

    Thinking of going to Sprint. Sprint always cares for their consumers. and I hate for T-Mobile consumers to get screwed by AT&T. Cause AT&T DON’T NEED T-MOBILE. THEY WILL MAKE LOTS OF PEOPLE VERY MAD AND PISS OFF AT AT&T CAUSE ONE they DON’T HAVE UNLIMITED DATA PACKAGE ANYMORE. TWO more stores will close on T-Mobile side cause I just saw a T-Mobile booth at my local mall and saw two AT&T but the mall wouldn’t allow AT&T to have to stores at the mall and I just saw a new Sprint Booth

  • I should point out here that inventory in T-Mobile Stores has suddenly become sparse. 

    • Owen Ew Youngs

      I have the G2, and my wife has the G2X, the first phone ever equipped with a dual-core processor. You won’t catch us complaining.

  • Destell

    ATT has screwed up so bad that they can’t think why and how they really screwed up ,that they have to now screw with a company that did know why and how,and want to buy them out to screw with the customers and make their lives miserable.The 2 companies services are totally differant and make people change or have lousy connections ,charge more for the lousy service and create havoc for everyone,and make everyone’s life miserable.Makes sense???

  • Have fun with VZW, Ben. But if you want to go to Canada or Europe, be sure to get one of their limited selection of World Phones.
    Sprint has developed this ‘plan’ for AT&T to enhance the use of their existing spectrum, but that is based on Sprint’s assumptions, not AT&T’s. Sprint is pissed off about losing T-Mo, no doubt about it. Dan Hesse screwed the pooch big time by trying to low-ball the Germans. T-Mo was their best shot at long-term survivability in the US market. However, AT&T has had the iPhone since launch, and it sees the true trend in the marketplace. Mobile data is about to explode on a logarithmic scale. Simply redeploying spectrum assets ain’t gonna cut it. And there is only so much spectrum to go around. The FCC can’t shit out new blocks to auction off without turning off other services, like terrestrial television, which means if they tell CBS, NBC and ABC that they have to shut off their analog signals once and for all, a whole lot of grannies up in the hills won’t be getting the nightly news any more.
    Yes, some stores will close and some employees will be let go, it’s inevitable. Many of those stores aren’t actually owned by AT&T or T-Mobile; they are affiliate partners using the branding. But in the end, just as when Cingular bought AT&T, the result will be better stores and lower operating costs. And with both GSM carriers finally united, we should start seeing a better mix of handsets and other equipment, far beyond T-Mo customers getting the iPhone and AT&T customers getting HTC7’s.
    Sprint’s goose was cooked without T-Mobile, but they have nobody to blame but themselves for missing out. Now, they have two options to try and stay competitive, gobble up the smaller carriers like Cricket, USCellular and MetroPCS, or be gobbled up by VZW.
    Either way, market saturation is almost at the point where acquiring new customers will no longer be a viable option. Carriers will have to actually compete to KEEP current customers, which means they will have to innovate, and offer their customers innovative products and services. You can already start to see it in the prepaid market, where the carriers are starting to roll out all-you-can-eat products at increasingly lower prices.

  • Owen Ew Youngs

    Wow, so you are more concerned about T-Mobile’s accessories and profits than its employees? I hope this isn’t the general opinion, or people like me who work in cellular sales are really screwed. I find this really surprising, particularly at a hedge in the recession when unemployment is so high… But just on a human level, man… Some of the most interesting and productive people I know work for independent wireless retailers.

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