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I’m very concerned about the T-Mobile and Sprint merger
This merger isn’t between two small, regional companies. T-Mobile and Sprint rank third and fourth nationally. Competitors don’t overlook them. Putting together their businesses would give the new T-Mobile above 100 million subscribers. Much of that would be comprised of the old T-Mobile’s customers, but Sprint is still bringing over a hefty 40 million or so subscribers.
You need choice, and the combined company significantly hinders that. If you’re shopping for a nationwide, modern network that’s always advancing, you’ll be limited to just three carriers. Verizon and AT&T, the two longtime juggernauts, would be joined only by the new T-Mobile.
Regulators have long desired to maintain at least four competitors in this industry. When AT&T tried to purchase T-Mobile, the U.S. government issued a ruling that consumers would be harmed by lack of choice. The same happened when SoftBank tried acquiring T-Mobile outright in 2014. Now there might be little resistance to such a transaction.
Yet, even with a pro-business administration in the White House and Congress also leaning in a favorable direction, the same negatives still exist.
Better competition means better pricing. That’s what the new T-Mobile is pushing out of the gate. Legere, Claure, and everyone else going along for the ride is proclaiming that customers will get an industry-leading network at a cheaper price.
While I’d love to be wrong on this one, I highly doubt the new T-Mobile will deliver less expensive wireless service. You can’t possibly give us the world’s first nationwide 5G network with continued expansion for 4G LTE at a lower price. There’s also no chance investors would allow such a thing.
T-Mobile and Sprint say they need each other to win the 5G arms race. True, indeed. But in the process teasing lower prices is foolish. Have Verizon or AT&T lowered prices? No, and they’re incredibly diverse companies. With over 100 million subscribers each, the last thing a major carrier thinking about is affordability. Instead, it’s thinking about generating more money off you.