AT&T/T-Mobile merger to get Senate hearing

The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold hearings on the proposed merger between AT&T and T-Mobile next month to examine the deal's potential impact on the telecom market.

The hearing will be held by the Senate Judiciary antitrust subcommittee on May 11 and will be headed by Wisconsin Democrat Herb Kohl. According to the hearing notice on the Judiciary Committee website, the hearing will ask whether the proposed merger would be the equivalent of "Humpty Dumpty being put back together again," a clear allusion to fears that a merger would signal the reconstitution of the old "Ma Bell" AT&T monopoly that the government formally broke up in 1982. The committee has not announced any scheduled speakers or witnesses for the hearing at this time.

HISTORY: Department of Justice vs. AT&T

Many critics have contended that an AT&T-T-Mobile merger would at the very least lead to the emergence of a duopolistic wireless telecom market controlled largely by Verizon and AT&T. Opposition to the proposed merger has united both consumer advocacy groups such as the Consumers Union and rival wireless carriers such as Sprint. Sprint CEO Dan Hesse argued that the newly merged wireless company would have "tremendous" power over the wireless market and would be bad for consumers.

"If you take a look at the market power of the big two, in postpaid, which is contracts, the way most users think of the business, in 2005 the big two had 52 per cent market share," Hesse told CNBC's Jim Cramer. "They've expanded that now with acquisitions in the last few years, up to 67 per cent. If this transaction goes through you're talking 79 per cent, or roughly 80 per cent of the market controlled by two companies. I think that's a little too much -- too much concentration.

If AT&T's T-Mobile acquisition gets approved, it will be the fourth major wireless carrier merger in eight years, following AT&T-Cingular in 2004, Sprint-Nextel in 2005, and Verizon-Alltel in 2008. AT&T would also become by far the largest wireless carrier in the United States with more than 130 million subscribers.

Read more about lan and wan in Network World's LAN & WAN section.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags business issuesMergers / acquisitionsat&tregulationservice providersgovernmentT-Mobile USALAN & WAN

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Brad Reed

Network World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?