FCC inquires about AT&T 4G LTE rollout

FCC asks for AT&T 4G LTE details

The Federal Communication Commission is asking for more details on its 4G LTE rollout in an attempt to give more scrutiny to the proposed T-Mobile acquistion.

As you may recall, AT&T is attempting to purchase T-Mobile for about $36 billion in a move to make it the nation’s largest carrier and give it a ton of usable spectrum. One of the major reasons it says the deal does through is because the move would enable it to roll out 4G LTE to nearly every inch of the country, including rural areas which generally get the short stick when it comes to mobile data.

The only issue is that a recent letter from AT&T made its way to the web, fully uncensored which said that AT&T would be able to cover about 97 percent of the nation with 4G LTE for about $3.8 billion. If it only costs $3.8 billion for AT&T to cover most of the nation, then why is AT&T going to spend 10 times that to buy T-Mobile to achieve that same amount of coverage? That’s a question the FCC is taking a harder look at.

When the letter first came out, many saw this as a “smoking gun” about AT&T lying about its real ambitions. I’m not quite buying that. Yes, AT&T probably overstated its case for buying T-Mobile to spread 4G LTE but the spectrum issue is a real one. The government will be auctioning off at least 500 MHz over the next few years but buying T-Mobile and its assets (towers, stores) will give AT&T a major advantage going forward.

[Via Mobiledia]

  • Enoel69

    I say they should use some of the 39 billion to buy spectrum from the Gov’t auction and also let them buy the Qualcomm spectrum. But pls a lot of us want Tmobile to remain one of the big four Network..33 million customers call tmobile home and are pleased with their cellphone rate plans and the devices they offer. There is always room for improvement and with the iphone coming to Tmobile, that will help retain some of the customers who want the device to stay put. The US cellphone consumers are well served and good for competition to have two CDMA carriers Sprint and Verizon and two GSM carriers Tmobile and Att.

Back to top ▴