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Sprint has undoubtedly made their position known on the proposed combination of AT&T and T-Mobile but they have officially submitted their formal request to deny the takeover to the FCC. Sprint came to the conclusion that the “proposed acquisition cannot be remedied through divestitures or conditions,” and urges the FCC to block the transaction. Inside their filing Sprint focused on three main points as to why the proposed merger should be blocked:
- The proposed T-Mobile takeover would harm the broadband economy, competition and consumers.
- The proposed T-Mobile takeover would harm innovation and investment.
- The proposed T-Mobile takeover has no public interest benefit.
While it’s obvious that Sprint has their own strategic interests in mind they make a fairly compelling argument. In this case Sprint may be a competitor but they are also interested in keeping competition alive and we have to agree that this deal has no public benefit interest. For AT&T this deal is business transaction and the idea that they will finally be able to cover rural areas is nice but the reality is it’s simply the way they make the deal sound really good.
This quote from the Sprint press release regarding their filing really sums it all up:
In its filing, Sprint states that the choice is very clear: The proposed transaction must be blocked. The transaction would harm consumers, competition and the American economy as the Twin Bells would not be deterred from increasing prices and reducing consumer choice in wireless devices, applications and services where they control approximately 80 percent of the wireless industry revenue. The proposed transaction would produce no tangible public interest benefits and would impose serious anti-competitive harms that cannot be remedied through divestitures or conditions. The Commission should reject the acquisition outright.
Check out the full press release available at Sprint or head on over the FCC and prepare to read 370+ pages.