Sep 06 AT 1:50 PM Edgar Cervantes 16 Comments

Sprint files suit against AT&T/T-Mobile merger; can they block it?

att-tmobile

The AT&T/T-Mobile merger may mean impending doom, but there’s no doubt many are still trying to stop it. Sprint has been against this acquisition from the very beginning. Though the company has clearly stated such, things are getting much more serious today.

As promised, Sprint will do everything in its power to stop AT&T from taking over T-Mobile. Sprint decided to follow suit with the US Department of Justice and filed a claim of its own against the feared acquisition.

Sprint’s statement basically echoes what we’ve been hearing all along; the only difference is that the company is now taking legal action. America’s first 4G network believes that AT&T’s acquisition of T-Mobile will give AT&T too much power in the US mobile market. This would not only create a carrier duopoly between Verizon and AT&T, but it would harm competition and inflate prices for customers.

Sprint opposes AT&T’s proposed takeover of T-Mobile. With today’s legal action, we are continuing that advocacy on behalf of consumers and competition, and expect to contribute our expertise and resources in proving that the proposed transaction is illegal.Susan Z. HallerVice President-Litigation, Sprint

According to Sprint’s press release, the proposed acquisition would do the following:

  • Harm retail consumers and corporate customers by causing higher prices and less innovation.
  • Entrench the duopoly control of AT&T and Verizon, the two “Ma Bell” descendants, of the almost one-quarter of a trillion dollar wireless market. As a result of the transaction, AT&T and Verizon would control more than three-quarters of that market and 90 percent of the profits.
  • Harm Sprint and the other independent wireless carriers. If the transaction were to be allowed, a combined AT&T and T-Mobile would have the ability to use its control over backhaul, roaming and spectrum and its increased market position to exclude competitors, raise their costs, restrict their access to handsets, damage their businesses and ultimately to lessen competition.

After months of not hearing anything on the topic, it’s a relief to hear people are not giving up on trying to stop this merger. Just like Sprint and the Department of Justice, though, AT&T/T-Mobile will not give up the fight easily.

Things are definitely starting to look rough for AT&T, which had been very sure this deal would go through. We can only assume what will happen, but now that others are entering the court room things are starting to become much more interesting. Check out the press release posted below, and let us know what you think. Will Sprint (and the others) be able to stop this acquisition? Will/should Verizon jump in?

Show Press Release
Sprint Files Suit to Block Proposed AT&T and T-Mobile Transaction

WASHINGTON (BUSINESS WIRE), September 06, 2011 – Sprint Nextel [NYSE:S] today brought suit against AT&T, Inc., AT&T Mobility, Deutsche Telekom and T-Mobile seeking to block the proposed acquisition as a violation of Section 7 of the Clayton Act. The lawsuit was filed in federal court in the District of Columbia as a related case to the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) suit against the proposed acquisition.

“Sprint opposes AT&T’s proposed takeover of T-Mobile,” said Susan Z. Haller, vice president-Litigation, Sprint. “With today’s legal action, we are continuing that advocacy on behalf of consumers and competition, and expect to contribute our expertise and resources in proving that the proposed transaction is illegal.”

Sprint’s lawsuit focuses on the competitive and consumer harms which would result from a takeover of T-Mobile by AT&T. The proposed takeover would:

Harm retail consumers and corporate customers by causing higher prices and less innovation.
Entrench the duopoly control of AT&T and Verizon, the two “Ma Bell” descendants, of the almost one-quarter of a trillion dollar wireless market. As a result of the transaction, AT&T and Verizon would control more than three-quarters of that market and 90 percent of the profits.
Harm Sprint and the other independent wireless carriers. If the transaction were to be allowed, a combined AT&T and T-Mobile would have the ability to use its control over backhaul, roaming and spectrum, and its increased market position to exclude competitors, raise their costs, restrict their access to handsets, damage their businesses and ultimately to lessen competition.

About Sprint Nextel

Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel served more than 52 million customers at the end of 2Q 2011 and is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier in the United States; offering industry-leading mobile data services, leading prepaid brands including Virgin Mobile USA, Boost Mobile, and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. Newsweek ranked Sprint No. 6 in its 2010 Green Rankings, listing it as one of the nation’s greenest companies, the highest of any telecommunications company. You can learn more and visit Sprint at www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.

Via: Android Central

Hello, I am Edgar Cervantes. I am an avid Android fan, and keeping myself updated on the topic is part of my daily life. I will always work hard to give the best of me to our community of Android enthusiasts, and I am very honored to be part of this ship. Hopefully we can all enjoy sharing our knowledge and opinions!

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  • Greg

    I’m so torn about this. While I hate the idea of T-Mobile (who I’ve been a subscriber with for almost 10 years) being consumed by the pile of shit that is AT&T, my recent aggravations with zero cell service in rural areas has got me questioning it. So what is the larger evil – being part of AT&T or having crappy service in rural areas? It’s a shame that there are no good solutions in the US. I feel like, at this point, you’re being screwed no matter how you look at it.

    • http://ArtisticAbode.com BetterWithRoot

      I think you may have been lied to; At&t doesn’t have rural service either.

      • baconator

        AT&T does have realty good rural service in a lot of places. I noticed that they service in rural areas got better after they merged with Alltel in some areas.

        • http://ArtisticAbode.com BetterWithRoot

          Which makes me believe the only way AT&T can get their network more robust is from taking over other carriers, and not by building out their own infrastructure.

          I live in Iowa, doesn’t get more rural than that. I know several people that don’t get signal with their AT&T phone. My parents live in the country and have to use U.S. Cellular. I got a small bar when using T-Mobile, and can get signal with VZW. People that have AT&T phones have to use other people’s phones, or walk to the edge of the driveway to fish for a signal.

  • Richard Yarrell

    I love SPRINT and gay men.

    • http://ArtisticAbode.com BetterWithRoot

      Do you know how i know you are a fake?

      How?

      You didn’t use enough bold, caps, or say anything about the Evo.

  • Richard Yarrell

    Bottomline, I support these actions by sprint for the betterment of the industry. The right to choose what carrier should always be decided by the customer nobody should have to be forced to be on a carrier they don’t want. It’s pretty clear that the DOJ doesn’t want this merger to take place either tmobile will be better off standing as tmobile forget at&t they will lie to get this transaction completed. Sprint see’s through all these fake promises from ass t&t. Go sprint…

    • http://ArtisticAbode.com BetterWithRoot

      I agree, it’s nice having another carrier put it’s voice behind the non merger. I just had a thought…What if Sprint is only doing this so it can watch T-mobile fail. T-mobile says it needs to merge in order to continue. I just read that AT&T may not have to pay the 6B$ if it’s after a certain date or if certain circumstances are reached. So t-mobile would have to fold(or get bought by Google or Vodaphone). I believe with the tiered data plans(AT&T, VZW) pushes people towards Sprint. Sprint seems the most to gain out of the merger not happening.

    • squiddy20

      “nobody should have to be forced to be on a carrier they don’t want…” or be told that their carrier of choice is “useless”, “overpriced”, or “using last years devices”. All of which you have done repeatedly in the past few weeks alone. Grow up and learn some respect.

      “It’s pretty clear that the DOJ doesn’t want this merger to take place…” What was your first clue? The fact that they ANNOUNCED they were going to dispute the AT&T/T-Mobile merger? Try to be a little more intelligent next time.

  • Galen20K

    not Att… I love T-Mobile and if a Powerful Company “genuinely” wanted to invest in T-Mobile and provide enough funds for them to actually compete(unlike DT who kept ALL the profits and never gave T-Mobile USA ANY) and really wanted to see Magenta succeed, I would be ok with that. I’ve been with T-Mobile since the Voicestream days, about 11 years now.

    …..just not Att, they would just run it into the ground or sell it off piece by piece destroying “everything” we loved about T-Mobile USA.

  • uknowme

    I have Sprint and I believe this was a great move. Mainly because no competition breeds stagnation. That and I believe AT&Teabag are evil.

  • Interpol91

    Well the Dept of Justice carries more weight so hopefully their suit is enough but at the same time it’s about the evidence they provide, not who they are.

  • codesplice

    I would have been much more supportive of Sprint’s filing if they had done it BEFORE the DOJ. As it is, it really just feels like they’re saying “hey me too!” and tagging along for the good publicity…. and so they can later talk about how influential they were at preventing the deal from going through.

  • snowbdr89

    hhmm its nice being on big red at this point in time, unlimited data and unlimited 4g mobile hotspot!! i dont mind tmo and im against this merger only because id hate to see tmo customers have to deal with att or be forced to be on the same network with that moron dick yarrell the now slowest n behind everyone else network…

  • Nathan

    Way to go sprint! :)

  • Raghav

    Verizon should have already done something. the more people, the better

  1. GregGuest 4 years ago

    I’m so torn about this. While I hate the idea of T-Mobile (who I’ve been a subscriber with for almost 10 years) being consumed by the pile of shit that is AT&T, my recent aggravations with zero cell service in rural areas has got me questioning it. So what is the larger evil – being part of AT&T or having crappy service in rural areas? It’s a shame that there are no good solutions in the US. I feel like, at this point, you’re being screwed no matter how you look at it.

    • I think you may have been lied to; At&t doesn’t have rural service either.

      • baconatorGuest 4 years ago

        AT&T does have realty good rural service in a lot of places. I noticed that they service in rural areas got better after they merged with Alltel in some areas.

        • Which makes me believe the only way AT&T can get their network more robust is from taking over other carriers, and not by building out their own infrastructure.

          I live in Iowa, doesn’t get more rural than that. I know several people that don’t get signal with their AT&T phone. My parents live in the country and have to use U.S. Cellular. I got a small bar when using T-Mobile, and can get signal with VZW. People that have AT&T phones have to use other people’s phones, or walk to the edge of the driveway to fish for a signal.

  2. Richard YarrellGuest 4 years ago

    I love SPRINT and gay men.

    • Do you know how i know you are a fake?

      How?

      You didn’t use enough bold, caps, or say anything about the Evo.

  3. Richard YarrellGuest 4 years ago

    Bottomline, I support these actions by sprint for the betterment of the industry. The right to choose what carrier should always be decided by the customer nobody should have to be forced to be on a carrier they don’t want. It’s pretty clear that the DOJ doesn’t want this merger to take place either tmobile will be better off standing as tmobile forget at&t they will lie to get this transaction completed. Sprint see’s through all these fake promises from ass t&t. Go sprint…

    • I agree, it’s nice having another carrier put it’s voice behind the non merger. I just had a thought…What if Sprint is only doing this so it can watch T-mobile fail. T-mobile says it needs to merge in order to continue. I just read that AT&T may not have to pay the 6B$ if it’s after a certain date or if certain circumstances are reached. So t-mobile would have to fold(or get bought by Google or Vodaphone). I believe with the tiered data plans(AT&T, VZW) pushes people towards Sprint. Sprint seems the most to gain out of the merger not happening.

    • squiddy20Guest 4 years ago

      “nobody should have to be forced to be on a carrier they don’t want…” or be told that their carrier of choice is “useless”, “overpriced”, or “using last years devices”. All of which you have done repeatedly in the past few weeks alone. Grow up and learn some respect.

      “It’s pretty clear that the DOJ doesn’t want this merger to take place…” What was your first clue? The fact that they ANNOUNCED they were going to dispute the AT&T/T-Mobile merger? Try to be a little more intelligent next time.

  4. not Att… I love T-Mobile and if a Powerful Company “genuinely” wanted to invest in T-Mobile and provide enough funds for them to actually compete(unlike DT who kept ALL the profits and never gave T-Mobile USA ANY) and really wanted to see Magenta succeed, I would be ok with that. I’ve been with T-Mobile since the Voicestream days, about 11 years now.

    …..just not Att, they would just run it into the ground or sell it off piece by piece destroying “everything” we loved about T-Mobile USA.

  5. I have Sprint and I believe this was a great move. Mainly because no competition breeds stagnation. That and I believe AT&Teabag are evil.

  6. Well the Dept of Justice carries more weight so hopefully their suit is enough but at the same time it’s about the evidence they provide, not who they are.

  7. I would have been much more supportive of Sprint’s filing if they had done it BEFORE the DOJ. As it is, it really just feels like they’re saying “hey me too!” and tagging along for the good publicity…. and so they can later talk about how influential they were at preventing the deal from going through.

  8. snowbdr89Guest 4 years ago

    hhmm its nice being on big red at this point in time, unlimited data and unlimited 4g mobile hotspot!! i dont mind tmo and im against this merger only because id hate to see tmo customers have to deal with att or be forced to be on the same network with that moron dick yarrell the now slowest n behind everyone else network…

  9. Way to go sprint! :)

  10. Verizon should have already done something. the more people, the better