Sprint CEO Dan Hesse argues that if the U.S. government approves the AT&T-T-Mobile deal, it would make it easy for Verizon Wireless to acquire Sprint, which is currently the third-largest carrier in the U.S. While the Sprint head had been vehemently opposed to the AT&T acquisition of T-Mobile in the past, even using the green unveiling of the Samsung Replenish as a platform for his agenda against the deal, he had not been explicit about the potential and possibility of an acquisition of Sprint by Verizon before.
According to This is my next, Hesse reiterated that Sprint, a smaller company, would not be able to compete against a duopoly created by an AT&T-T-Mobile entity and Verizon Wireless. Referring to the duopoly as the “Twin Bells,” given that Verizon and AT&T were formed from government intervention historically to split up AT&T, referred to as Ma Bell, to increase competition in the telecommunications industry.
Also speaking at the Senate hearing is Cellular South CEO Victor Meena, who was also equally opposed to the merger using the analogy that Ma Bell would come back as two sisters, was more focused on roaming agreements for LTE and 4G. As AT&T and Verizon Wireless are slated to use the 700 MHz spectrum for their 4G LTE networks, regional carriers would have a hard time roaming on the faster mobile broadband network as regional carriers operate on incompatible radio frequencies.
Arguing for the mergers are AT&T and T-Mobile CEOs Randall Stephenson and Phillipp Humm, both of whom say that the combined entity would bring better service and lower costs. Additionally, according to This is my next, the merger would also help free up tax money:
A promise that it will build rural broadband covering 97 percent of Americans with entirely private funds, freeing taxpayer money to hit the remaining three percent.
The deal is valued at $39 billion and would give T-Mobile’s parent Deustche Telekom an exit strategy from the U.S. market.
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