Although the buyout of T-Mobile by AT&T still has to go through the regulatory approval process before it's actually a done deal, there are still a lot of people concerned with what effect the acquisition will have on the industry, including Sprint. Speaking today at CTIA, Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said that the company plans to voice its concerns about an ATT/T-Mobile merger to Congress. Hesse explained that if the deal is completed, it could "stifle innovation" and would give AT&T-Mobile "tremendous power." If the acquisition does go through, AT&T would grow to around 130 million subscribers, giving both them and Verizon (who won't be opposing the deal) control over 79 percent of the U.S. market. Jim Cicconi, senior executive vice president at AT&T, responded to Hesse with the following statement:
“We understand Sprint has concerns, and we’ll be happy to address any they present, whether at the Justice Department, the FCC or the Congress. We feel we have good and compelling answers. And we feel policymakers will readily understand that any company with whom AT&T competes may not be especially positive about anything which makes AT&T a better competitor in the wireless market.”
It's easy to understand where Hesse is coming from, and many folks seem to agree that there's not much good that can come from AT&T absorbing T-Mobile. Not only will a combined AT&T and T-Mobile become a 130 million customer behemoth and cause Sprint to drop to a distant third place among the major carriers, but they'll also be creating a GSM monopoly here in the U.S. Where do you all stand on the situation? Do you think allowing AT&T to acquire T-Mo is a good thing, or should the government block the deal from going down?