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Pot to Kettle: AT&T Sounds Alarm That Sprint-Softbank Deal Threatens Competitive Wireless

Phillip Dampier October 18, 2012 AT&T, Broadband "Shortage", Competition, Public Policy & Gov't, Sprint, Wireless Broadband 1 Comment

AT&T says this deal was no problem, but ponders whether Sprint-Clearwire is.

AT&T, the company that tried and failed to buy Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile USA, is sounding the alarm, urging regulators to carefully review any deal between Sprint, Softbank, and Clearwire.

“Softbank’s acquisition of Sprint and the control it gains over Clearwire will give one of Japan’s largest wireless companies control of significantly more U.S. wireless spectrum than any other company,” Brad Burns, an AT&T vice president said in a statement released late Wednesday. “We expect that fact and others will be fully explored in the regulatory review process. This is one more example of a very dynamic and competitive U.S. wireless marketplace, which is an important fact for U.S. regulators to recognize.”

AT&T claims its primary concern is the growing foreign control of America’s wireless carriers. That did not seem to bother AT&T from doing business with Germany-based Deutsche Telekom. Verizon Wireless has not been the recipient of any AT&T complaints either, and it is jointly owned by Verizon Communications and London-based Vodafone Group Plc.

Sprint bankrolled an opposition campaign against AT&T’s 2011 attempt to buy T-Mobile in a $39 billion dollar deal that failed after regulators objected to its impact on marketplace competition.

AT&T’s concerns about spectrum control may be an attempt to lobby the FCC for more leniency in approving future spectrum acquisitions. But industry analysts note that while a combined Sprint-Clearwire network may control more spectrum than others, much of it occupies less-favorable, very high frequencies that have trouble delivering robust service indoors. AT&T maintains a considerable amount of prime spectrum most sought by carriers, some of it yet to be used.

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9 years ago

Riiiight… so in other words he’s saying “don’t cut into our profits.” Seems to be the theme these days whenever someone mentions “competitive” anything.

I wish I could source from venture capitalists right now. I’d start my own Broadband & Wireless companies and offer NO CAP and competitive rates. Once I made enough money I’d use it to expand upon Google’s infrastructure and offer NO CAP Gigabit internet. I don’t care who’s toes I step on.

The greed of these people makes me sick. Are there country club memberships really that much a year they need to make $500Million +?!

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