AT&T to Eat T-Mobile in $39B Monopoly-Flavored Merger"/>
T-Mobile thinks AT&T is just terrible. Or at least it used to. Now that the companies have announced plans to merge, it looks like T-Mobile will have to stop pointing out how shitty AT&T's service is in almost every commercial it makes.
AT&T's $39 billion cash-and-stock purchase of Bellevue-based T-Mobile USA from Deutsche Telekom was announced Sunday amid great fanfare by Wall Street bankers who stand to collect hundreds of millions of dollars in fees for negotiating the deal.
Showing noticeably less enthusiasm were consumer advocates who see no good coming out of the creation of the largest, most unholy phone-company behemoth ever conceived by humankind.
One such advocate told The New York Times:
"AT&T is already a giant in the wireless marketplace, where customers routinely complain about hidden charges and other anticonsumer practices," said Parul P. Desai, policy counsel for Consumers Union. "From a consumer's perspective, it's difficult to come up with any justification or benefits from letting AT&T swallow up one of its few major competitors."
The merger is expected to face some serious hurdles from government regulators at the Justice Department and the Federal Communications Commission. And while AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson sounds confident, saying "this is a deal that gets approved," the fact that AT&T promised to pay T-Mobile a $3 billion "breakup fee" if the deal is nixed by the feds seems to speak for itself.
AT&T is claiming that the merger will be good for consumers because it will make its crappy service, famously pointed out by T-Mobile, better by combining the two company's networks.
Plus, it will mean one fewer choice to burden simple-minded customers with--T-Mobile, AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, who can remember them all?
Because if there's one thing any industry needs, it's fewer choices.