Leap Wireless voices its concerns about the AT&T/T-Mobile deal

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from Omaha, NE
Published: May 24, 2011

Leap Wireless

Ever since AT&T announced its intent to acquire T-Mobile, a number of entities have stepped forward to voice their concern about the deal. Today Leap Wireless, the parent company of Cricket, joined Sprint and other wireless companies in the battle against AT&T-Mobile. In a statement issued earlier today, Doug Hutcheson, President and CEO of Leap and Cricket, had this to say about the proposed acquisition:

"We oppose the proposed acquisition. A competitive marketplace is critical to wireless innovation -- and small and mid-sized carriers such as Cricket are driving that innovation. The proposed acquisition would eliminate T-Mobile as an important nationwide competitor in the industry. It also raises problems of spectrum concentration and impaired access to spectrum by competitive carriers; undercuts access to wholesale voice and data roaming services; and threatens to foster reduced device availability and reduced interoperability of wireless networks and devices, among many other issues. Those results are not in the public interest."

Like several other opponents of the AT&T-Mobile deal, Leap also pointed out that if the buyout is approved, Verizon and AT&T would control the vast majority of the wireless market. The AT&T-Mobile deal was recently went through a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing and is still being reviewed by both the FCC and Department of Justice. The process is expected to last at least until the end of this year, so I'm sure that Leap won't be the last company that voices its opposition to AT&T-Mobile.

Leap Opposes Proposed AT&T Acquisition of T-Mobile USA
SAN DIEGO, May 24, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --

Leap Wireless International, Inc. (NASDAQ: LEAP), a leading provider of innovative and value-driven wireless communications services and its operating subsidiary, Cricket Communications, Inc., today announced their opposition to AT&T's proposed acquisition of T-Mobile USA, a nationwide competitor to AT&T and the nation's fourth largest wireless carrier.

The acquisition would harm consumers. It would reduce competition and decrease innovation and investment in the wireless industry. It would also accelerate the trend of alarming concentration of wireless providers and would eliminate T-Mobile as a competitive force that helps balance the increasing power of the largest carriers. If the acquisition is permitted to occur, it would result in the domination of the wireless industry by two massive super-carriers, AT&T and Verizon, who together would control more than 80 percent of the wireless market. Regulators and lawmakers have long recognized that such concentration does not serve consumers. The historical policy of promoting competition in the wireless marketplace has produced tremendous benefits for consumers, including reduced services prices, broader availability of wireless services to all income levels and ethnic groups, and the development of new and enhanced service offerings, such as mobile broadband and unlimited services at fixed prices. That pro-competition policy should not be reversed.

"We oppose the proposed acquisition. A competitive marketplace is critical to wireless innovation -- and small and mid-sized carriers such as Cricket are driving that innovation," said Doug Hutcheson, President and CEO of Leap and Cricket. "The proposed acquisition would eliminate T-Mobile as an important nationwide competitor in the industry. It also raises problems of spectrum concentration and impaired access to spectrum by competitive carriers; undercuts access to wholesale voice and data roaming services; and threatens to foster reduced device availability and reduced interoperability of wireless networks and devices, among many other issues. Those results are not in the public interest."

About Leap

Leap, through its operating subsidiary Cricket, is the pioneer of simple and affordable unlimited wireless services with no long-term commitments or credit checks required. Cricket serves more than 5.8 million customers in 35 states and the District of Columbia, offering wireless voice and broadband Internet services over its latest technology, high-quality wireless network. Cricket's nationwide wireless voice service plans include unlimited anytime minutes, unlimited U.S. long distance, unlimited text and picture messaging, unlimited text to Mexico, unlimited Mobile Web, unlimited directory assistance, as well as a variety of calling features and feature-rich mobile applications such as popular games, ringtones and wallpapers. Cricket is offered by Leap Wireless International, Inc., headquartered in San Diego, Calif. For more information on Leap, visit www.leapwireless.com. For more information on Cricket, visit www.mycricket.com.

Via PhoneScoop