T-Mobile Comments on New FCC Filings, Calls Opponents Ostriches

AT&T and T-Mobile are at it again, defending their stance on the would be merger, pending an official decision.  AT&T’s Wayne Watts continues to suggest that the merger is on track to be approved by Mach 2012, no matter the outcry from competitors and individuals.  Tom Sugrue, T-Mobile’s Senior Vice President of Government Affairs, was even reported as saying:

“The opponents of the AT&T/T-Mobile merger have had their final say as part of the FCC’s formal pleading cycle and, not surprisingly, they have failed to offer any credible arguments to support their view that the Commission should deny the transaction. What is surprising, however, is their repeated head-in-the-sand insistence that no spectrum crisis exists. As part of their application, AT&T and T-Mobile provided a compelling showing of their need for more spectrum to continue to provide quality service to customers and roll out new technologies in the future. And the two companies have demonstrated that a combination of their networks and spectrum holdings is by far the best way to solve this problem and ensure improved service and enhanced innovation. The FCC has long acknowledged the harmful consequences of ignoring the spectrum crunch, and we are confident it will approve our proposed market-based solution.”

I won’t deny that a spectrum crisis exists, but I certainly think that the proposed merger creates more problems than it solves.  This merger sure is getting interesting.  What say you, loyal T-Mobile fans?

BusinessWire, The Washington Post

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  • ogopogo

    Most companies that are forced with a dilemma (such as spectrum), tend to INNOVATE. I just don’t see that with AT&T. For $38B, you would figure that the behemoth AT&T could engineer a solution, but, I digress, AT&T does not innovate. Why should they? Their customers are sheep, and willing to fund their lack of innovation.

  • Tito!

    Ahem. Tom Sugrue commented, not T-Mobile (:

    enough of this tea party chit chat!
    Like Senator Kohl said, “Admit it! You’re competitors.”

    Haha, AT&T: we Laugh at you! please don’t shower us with you’re ego;
    FCC, should fine for foreseeing a decision they have to make!
    To slander the answer ‘yes’ should be insulting to a commissioner. 

    Cannot wait until this all over with. [& the answer is NO.] :D

  • Tito!

    Ahem. Tom Sugrue commented, not T-Mobile (:

    enough of this tea party chit chat!
    Like Senator Kohl said, “Admit it! You’re competitors.”

    Haha, AT&T: we Laugh at you! please don’t shower us with you’re ego;
    FCC, should fine for foreseeing a decision they have to make!
    To slander the answer ‘yes’ should be insulting to a commissioner. 

    Cannot wait until this all over with. [& the answer is NO.] :D

  • Tito!

    Ahem. Tom Sugrue commented, not T-Mobile (:

    enough of this tea party chit chat!
    Like Senator Kohl said, “Admit it! You’re competitors.”

    Haha, AT&T: we Laugh at you! please don’t shower us with you’re ego;
    FCC, should fine for foreseeing a decision they have to make!
    To slander the answer ‘yes’ should be insulting to a commissioner. 

    Cannot wait until this all over with. [& the answer is NO.] :D

  • Tfiw433

    There are still loyal T-Mobile fans? I’m just waiting for a good “come to our network” deal and I’m out. I had to call CS three times to get my data plan changed, and they still had no idea what I wanted. Cingulars CS was better than what T-Mobile has now.

  • Tfiw433

    There are still loyal T-Mobile fans? I’m just waiting for a good “come to our network” deal and I’m out. I had to call CS three times to get my data plan changed, and they still had no idea what I wanted. Cingulars CS was better than what T-Mobile has now.

  • Ted

    T-Mobile and AT&T claim there is a spectrum crunch?  I call B.S.

    All I want is to be able to make calls reliably and clearly.  There is plenty of spectrum for that.

    Any other spectrum “requirements” are fictional requirements generated out of their desire to increase their already huge profits.  No real requirement exists.

  • Ted

    T-Mobile and AT&T claim there is a spectrum crunch?  I call B.S.

    All I want is to be able to make calls reliably and clearly.  There is plenty of spectrum for that.

    Any other spectrum “requirements” are fictional requirements generated out of their desire to increase their already huge profits.  No real requirement exists.

  • William

    Anyone else notice T-Mobile’s new family plan advertisements claiming $69.99 for 2X Unlimited Talk, 2X Unlimited Data, etc.?

    I ran over to a T-Mobile affiliated store to buy the deal, only to be
    told that you have to read the small print to see that the cost is
    really double what the large print claims.  I walked out in disgust.

    When you read the small print, you see that the cost is PER PERSON, so the minimum cost is really double what they have in large print.

    That’s real, real weak in my opinion.

    Thanks for wasting my time, T-Mobile.  Not interested in doing business with you.

    Lesson for businesses: Trick someone into going into spending their time to buy your products only to discover that the deal is nothing like what is expected, and you lose potential customers.  Result is opposite of what you want, most likely.

    • James

      any educated person who had done a little shopping around would realize that 69.99 is not a reasonable price for unlimited everything for 2 people. i’m a salesman chief and you cant sell stupid. thats your bad william. plus i’ve done the research and tmobile is the cheapest for new customers anyway.

      • William

        James, you are a COMPLETE idiot.  Walk into any Walmart, and they sell rebranded T-Mobile service: two lines for $70 per month.  Each additional line is just $25 per month.  They have had that product for months now.  It does not include unlimited data, however.  Typically as technologies mature, prices go down.  So T-Mobile offering $69.99 for two people for unlimited everything is not unreasonable at all (no middleman needed to share the profits).

        You’re also wrong about your other ill-informed statement: T-Mobile is definitely not the cheapest.  There are plenty of MVNO’s (such as Walmart) and even a few primary carriers (such as Cricket) that are MUCH less expensive.

        So before you call someone stupid, maybe take a good look at yourself.  You’ll find “stupid” staring at you in the mirror.

        • gus

          William your own comment makes you look like a fuckin moron. 
          You said it yourself that the walmart plan DOESNT INCLUDE UNLIMITED DATA!! 
          Ya ok maybe TMobile should take that sign down but dude take responsibility for your own situation. 
          Quite frankly you sound like, “that guy”. 
          The guy with shit credit who can only go to tmobile or have shitty prepaid service like walmart. 
          So you blame the company instead of taking any responsibility. 
          BOO HOO HOO tmobile had a sign up and you found out all the details and it didnt fit your perception. 
          Maybe you should go to a grocery store and pretend you fell down and get a lawyer and sue. 

        • William

          That ‘shitty prepaid service’ by Walmart (your description) is 100% on the T-Mobile network.  Contrary to your opinion, I’ve actually heard that the T-Mobile network is quite good for the price.

          And what is this ‘responsibility’ that you keep foolishly blathering about?  I took full responsibility.  I saw a huge billboard that led me to believe one thing, and then spent my time and gas driving to the (empty) store to sign up at which point they explained to me the fine print that was completely contrary to large print.  At that point I took full responsibility and left the store, refusing to do business with a firm that resulting in me wasting my time.  Which is now exactly the same as I will do for you.

      • Lcg1519

        I’m biased BUT I’m looking at the sign in the store and it CLEARLY says “unlimited family plan $69.99 each line” u don’t need to read the fine print to see it. Its HUGE! but again….I’m biased

        • BrianS

          The T-Mobile billboards have the huge print in, maybe 8-12 foot high letters, whereas the small print off in the corner is tiny in comparison.  Didn’t even see the small print until a friend pointed it out.  So potential customers see the billboard, then drive to the T-Mobile dealer, and then are unhappy when the deal is not even close to what it looked like.  Then they leave and buy service from a different service partner.

    • Guest

      Sounds like the real problem here is your lack of common sense and or intelligence.
      Real easy to blame the company instead of taking personal responsibility

    • Guest

      Sounds like the real problem here is your lack of common sense and or intelligence.
      Real easy to blame the company instead of taking personal responsibility

      • renter

        If I was tmobile I would be glad you didn’t sign up because you would have been a pain in the ass as a customer.

        • None

          So true!!  The small print on that sign is really not that small.  Be happy there is fine print at all.  Some of the carriers out there make up the prices as they go (so it seems).  No fine print needed.

      • renter

        If I was tmobile I would be glad you didn’t sign up because you would have been a pain in the ass as a customer.

    • None

      So you went to what carrier?

  • Angarma1

    the word for both companies: GREEDY

  • Anonymous

    I buy AT&T’s spectrum scarcity as much as I buy the concept of bandwidth scarcity. Only insofar as it’s manufactured for the purpose of increasing costs to the consumer.  That aside, for this little press release alone, whether or not the merger gets approved, I may just jump ship to Sprint anyhow.  Loosing respect for T-Mobile more and more with each passing day.

  • Anonymous

    I buy AT&T’s spectrum scarcity as much as I buy the concept of bandwidth scarcity. Only insofar as it’s manufactured for the purpose of increasing costs to the consumer.  That aside, for this little press release alone, whether or not the merger gets approved, I may just jump ship to Sprint anyhow.  Loosing respect for T-Mobile more and more with each passing day.

    • renter

      Do you have any proof?

  • Neoprimal

    I’m not saying the spectrum crunch doesn’t exist but I feel there are ways around it vs. merging…more transparent roaming agreements, tower sharing, etc. Lots of stuff could be put in place instead of a merger.

    ATT and TMobile are the 2 national GSM carriers. Merging creates a monopoly in GSM carriers. Is that a weak argument? Maybe. But for people like me who prefer GSM over CDMA it’s a truly hard knock.

    It’ll be approved though. The silly conspiracy theorist inside me is seeing certain mergers take place that really shouldn’t have been allowed to and thinking there’s a trend of something behind the scenes going on. Something, whats the word – dirty? corrupt? Maybe it’s just good business and I’m stuck in the old ways of thinking that 2 parallel competing companies shouldn’t be allowed to come together. I don’t care if they compete with other carriers, this is a rare case where there’s a subset product and service that counts on it’s own. You don’t allow the only 2 LCD manuf. to merge, you don’t allow the only 2 memory makers to merge so why allow the only 2 GSM carriers to merge? Granted, that’s product vs. service but they are similar. 
    If Cox and Comcast were the only 2 cable providers in all of America…should they be allowed to merge? Even though there’s IPTV and Satellite out there competing with the same service? No.
    ATT was split up only to come back a more powerful entity…I doubt this was just luck of the draw. Seemed like it may have been very carefully planned and played – what they lack in innovative thinking they certainly make up for in backdoor politricks.

    Aaaaaaanyway, the point is – I think it’s a bad move. 

  • Lilmicky3

    LETS GET THE DEAL DONE AND GET IT OVER WITH .. 

    • None

      It has to happen soon.  If not, politics are going to start creeping in and then it will not be done for some time.  The closer if comes to political primary season, the more this is going to turn into a political grandstanding issue (and then take us forever to get an answer)

  • Luisjimenez1980

    yeah right stupid att i hope and i will pray god for the deal not to go thru they should spent more money building better cell tower for lte and should not be wasting money buying t mobile now that they don’t have anymore exclusivity with apple iPhone now they are trying to monopolized usa t mobile has being the best company not giving damn headaches with credit checks stuff like that anyways im going to sprint goodbye stupid att 

  • J. Williams

    It won’t go through.

    • TMOTECH

      You are delusional 

      • J. Williams

        Please go away.

        • renter

          you make a statement and all you can respond with is, “please go away”. 

    • renter

      LOL why?
      Because you say it won’t?

  • TMoFan

    I expect at&t to push hard for this but it hurts to hear this from T-Mobile. I understand why they are saying this, they are doing what their parent is telling them to do, but it still hurts. I wish they felt the same way I do, that T-Mobile can be saved and would come out of this better and stronger in the end. They are still making a profit, their rates rival those of the other carriers and to solve their LTE problem they could strike a deal with LightSquared. I guess people just don’t care about having a great rate national carrier. I have no intention of doing business with at&t and will dump them and their junk network/cs if this thing gets through. I’m looking at Sprint but their entire future is in question because of this ridiculous buyout.

    This is more about spectrum, bringing LTE to the heartland of America and the iPhone. There is a reason why at&t is willing to spend almost double T-Mobile’s worth and that’s the same reason why Verizon is keeping quiet. The “Twin Bells” are perfectly happy controlling 80% of the market. Everything else doesn’t matter. When you think wireless, they want you to think at&t and Verizon and nothing more.

    • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

      Sprint was going down and look at Sprint now, sprint is going back up.

    • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

      Sprint was going down and look at Sprint now, sprint is going back up.

    • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

      Sprint was going down and look at Sprint now, sprint is going back up.

  • http://twitter.com/iGNetworks iGNetworks

    No the best way is to hold another auction for T-Mobile for LTE.

  • http://thesistown.com/ thesis writing

    appropriate picture) cool)

  • http://thesistown.com/ thesis writing

    appropriate picture) cool)

  • TMOTECH

    There is no spectrum crunch for AT&T. They have more spectrum than anyone else. They use 850 for GSM and 1900  for 3G/4G HSPA+. They also own a chunk of the 700 MHZ band they are not using. That is what Verizon Wireless is using for their LTE network. And They own a chunk of the AWS 1700/2100 band they are not using. That is what Metro PCS is using for their LTE network. So why cant they use their chunk of each and their problem is solved. Leave TMO alone. Most of us employees are in agreement. TMO good. ATT Bad. 

    • Itmustbejj

      For what it’s worth. Sprint is the carrier with the most spectrum ever since they purchased Nextel.

      • Anonymous

        AT&T has plenty of 700MHz spectrum. They bought it the auction, and from Qualcomm, and from other companies that needed to sell, just to make money.

        AT&T needs go sit in the corner, with their head in the hand. Can’t stand their name.

    • Itmustbejj

      For what it’s worth. Sprint is the carrier with the most spectrum ever since they purchased Nextel.

    • Itmustbejj

      For what it’s worth. Sprint is the carrier with the most spectrum ever since they purchased Nextel.

    • renter

      Update your resume.

    • renter

      Update your resume.

  • TMOTECH

    There is no spectrum crunch for AT&T. They have more spectrum than anyone else. They use 850 for GSM and 1900  for 3G/4G HSPA+. They also own a chunk of the 700 MHZ band they are not using. That is what Verizon Wireless is using for their LTE network. And They own a chunk of the AWS 1700/2100 band they are not using. That is what Metro PCS is using for their LTE network. So why cant they use their chunk of each and their problem is solved. Leave TMO alone. Most of us employees are in agreement. TMO good. ATT Bad. 

  • TMOTECH

    There is no spectrum crunch for AT&T. They have more spectrum than anyone else. They use 850 for GSM and 1900  for 3G/4G HSPA+. They also own a chunk of the 700 MHZ band they are not using. That is what Verizon Wireless is using for their LTE network. And They own a chunk of the AWS 1700/2100 band they are not using. That is what Metro PCS is using for their LTE network. So why cant they use their chunk of each and their problem is solved. Leave TMO alone. Most of us employees are in agreement. TMO good. ATT Bad. 

  • the truth

    Yes

  • the truth

    Yes

  • Nick

    I always see people talking about how AT&TMobile will create a GSM monolpoly in the US.  So what?  Most people don’t care about that.  they just want the best phones & plans for the cheapest price.  they don’t care about GSM vs. whatever.

    To me it seems very clear that DT WILL sell TMO to someone.  When it goes through I just hope that it’s as seemless as possible and that the new carrier will honor exisiting plans.  oh, and will offer phones as great as what TMO has.

    • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

      A lot of people care about GSM……

    • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

      A lot of people care about GSM……

      • renter

        That’s not a valid reason to stop the sale.

      • renter

        That’s not a valid reason to stop the sale.

        • Anonymous

          The context of Andrew’s statement is the response to Nick saying that nobody cared.  He isn’t saying that “people caring about GSM” is the reason to stop the merger.

          The reasons to stop the merger are:
          1) It will decrease competition
          2) AT&T’s promise to expand wireless coverage to sparsly populated areas is not related to the merger.  They can do that already whether or not they get T-Mobile’s spectrum.  If anything, they will have more cash on hand to expand if they do not blow it all on T-Mobile.
          3) A GSM monopoly IS a big deal.  As someone who uses unlocked phones, there will be no incentive for AT&T to cater to me in a fair way, as I will have no other options.  They will be able to charge what they want, and I will be forced to pay or sign a contract.  You might say “so, they can do what they want!” but that is the point.  We want our companies to be have the incentive to compete through price and performance.  No competition = bad price and performance.

        • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

          I sent a 4 page letter to the FCC explaining all of that. You took the words right from my mouth.

        • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

          I sent a 4 page letter to the FCC explaining all of that. You took the words right from my mouth.

        • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

          I sent a 4 page letter to the FCC explaining all of that. You took the words right from my mouth.

      • None

        Anyone leaving this country for business or pleasure cares about GSM

      • Nick

        that may be true however in my original post I said “most people” don’t care about GSM/CDMA.  International travelers may care (I’m not one) but they’re a small minority.

        a lot is less than most.

      • Nick

        that may be true however in my original post I said “most people” don’t care about GSM/CDMA.  International travelers may care (I’m not one) but they’re a small minority.

        a lot is less than most.

    • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

      Also if you’re an international person traveling to the United States your only choice is AT&T, and a GSM monopoly is still a monopoly on something.

    • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

      Also if you’re an international person traveling to the United States your only choice is AT&T, and a GSM monopoly is still a monopoly on something.

    • Anonymous

      thank you for talking sense.  you have to realize that the majority of america could give a rat just as long as they can make their calls and watch their youtube.  

      And you’re absolutely right DT has never lied to us (employees) that they were looking around for a partner etc so regardless you either get a nice transition (GSM – GSM) or you get Sprint CDMA and GSM and Nextel…you decide.

    • Anonymous

      thank you for talking sense.  you have to realize that the majority of america could give a rat just as long as they can make their calls and watch their youtube.  

      And you’re absolutely right DT has never lied to us (employees) that they were looking around for a partner etc so regardless you either get a nice transition (GSM – GSM) or you get Sprint CDMA and GSM and Nextel…you decide.

      • Mick09

        Sprint doesn’t want t-mo as for the merge att must have got assurence from someone the deal would go through they wouldn’t risk billions on a chance it wouldn’t T-mobile employee’s better dust off there resumes!

        • Anonymous

          exactly, this deal didnt happen overnight, everyone forgets that this deal took months to underwrite and have some major financial backers.  And dont think Blue didnt pick up and call their political friends in DC to get a nod before committing to something like this.  There’s a lot of money and spectrum at stake if they lose this deal.  That’s partly why they put in such a ridiculous amount of money and spectrum that they would pay to tmo should the deal not go through.

          Sprint is still recouping and doing well gaining customers back, this would disrupt that momentum.  I think Dan Hesse is just being a bitter pill and trying to throw a wrench into things as pay back as i’m sure the other carriers did when they were merging w/ nextel.

    • TMoFan

      That’s true that DT is determined to get out of the US market, but they should not get a huge payday at the expense of massive layoffs and intense market concentration that will cripple competition. They have other options, let them pursue those instead of trying to have it all and screwing everyone else over.

  • Jg

    If they merge, this will put this country back years, where ATT can control pricing and no one can say nothing about it, including their business partners.

  • Anonymous

    everyone, our VP of Engineering put it into really good perspective for Tmo USA.  This network is analogous to a house that you rent.  We’ve been renting this house for a while now and the owner has put in money to upgrade it here and there for us and we forget that at the end of the day the owner wanted to sell the house.  Like it or not that’s the reality of it.  They didnt want to add a “second floor” because they are probably tired of putting money into the house…

    From my understanding the public comment period is now over and the FCC and DOJ is reviewing things

    • None

      Is there are set time period where they will deliberate or can this go on for through the entire political season next year?

      • Anonymous

        i think there’s timelines that the gov has to adhere to…kind of like a shot clock.  conspiracy theorist have said that Obama might throw his hat in this to gain some points for his re-election.  OR they can try to get this deal done before all that ish takes place

  • the_truth

    Our call center had an attrition of 102 employees last month. We are down to 412-ish from over 700.

    • None

      You might need assitance with that math.  LOL

      • the_truth

        what? You can’t subtract 102 from 700?? It’s not that hard. Really.

        • None

          700-102 isnt 412 though. Its 598. You obvs can’t do the math lol

      • IT Guy

        lol he didn’t mean they went from 700 – 412 last month.

  • None

    If (when) AT&T takes over, who then becomes the #4 carrier? 

    • http://spritemoney.myopenid.com/ Andrew

      Metro PCS

  • None

    If (when) AT&T takes over, who then becomes the #4 carrier? 

  • None

    If (when) AT&T takes over, who then becomes the #4 carrier? 

  • Anonymous

    Just say no to GSM Monopoly.

  • None

    Ok, I actually tried it.  You got me!   :)

  • Anonymous

    And to think that I have to jump ship to Verizon before 7/7/2011 in order to get unlimited data grandfathered in.

    Tough decision. Big fan of the Magenta, but they’re really screwing me here. I guess it’s really the Dark Side (AKA at&t) that’s really puttin’ it to me, but seriously, they could have at least had the courtesy to offer a coupon for a reach around (preferably without a two-year contract) when they came up with this whole buyout mumbo-jumbo.

    • Anonymous

      I’m going to use your post to inform people about something and so this will be picked up by Google for others to find on the Net.

      Firstly, there’s no such thing as “grandfathered plans.”  And second, people are mistaken if they think they have any contractual rights once the acquisition takes place.

      Grandfathered Plans: This is a concept started between users in 2006-07.  The carriers have never recognized it. (Ask a CSR if T-Mobile has the right to change, suspend or terminate your talk and/or data plan.  A competent CSR who knows what is what will respond “yes.”)

      Legally, you enjoy old data plan rates “at the pleasure of the carrier,” meaning it can terminate your plan with only a few weeks notice, or no notice.

      Read your terms of service and contract.  There’s NOTHING in there about “grandfathered plans.”

      What is in your contract is that YOU gave the carrier the unilateral right to change, suspend, or terminate your contract, at any time, for any reason, or no reason, and with some carriers, no notice.

      Here’s the relevant clauses, in AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon user agreements.

      Post AT&T acquisition agreements:  Generally on any ACQUISITION (which this is, it’s not a merger albeit AT&T and T-Mobile like to use the term to make it look like T-Mobile customers won’t be getting the shaft) the selling company (here T-Mobile) retains no rights in relation to dealing with customers.  The buyer is free to do what it wants with the purchased company, including selling off all assets, firing all the employees, and requiring T-Mobile customers to go through a credit check and apply for AT&T service.

      In the purchase/sale agreement there may be provisions on what T-Mobile can and can’t do with existing customers or new customers, including what terms and conditions it can obligate itself to follow.  AT&T may also have agreed to honor all T-Mobile contracts, for the term remaining on those contracts.

      BUT THIS BEGS THE QUESTION:  All those contracts that AT&T will supposedly honor include the provision that T-Mobile can terminate the contract for any reason, no reason, with no notice.  Since AT&T will be purchasing your entire contract, it has bought the termination provision too. 

      So legally AT&T post-acquisition can send notice to all T-Mobile customers immediately terminating their contracts and invite them to reapply for service with AT&T. (Of course, the creditworthy customers won’t have to apply, AT&T will send them notice that if they want they can continue service with AT&T.)

      Sidenote: AFAIK, AT&T and T-Mobile have NOT said anything that legally acts as a contractual modification of the above terms and conditions.  Besides, all the agreements you signed said that the agreement can only be modified by a signed addendum to the agreement.  Vague statements made by T-Mobile and AT&T do not constitute legal modifications to the contracts you signed.

      Moreover, the govt. may impose requirements on AT&T, including that it cannot wholesale terminate T-Mobile contracts.  But expect AT&T to use the termination provision as a loophole to get rid of you.  After the acquisition is approved no one in govt. is going to do anything about this, especially if AT&T says “We promised to honor the contracts.  A provision in those contracts gives us the right to terminate accounts.  So we are legal.”

      Better contact Washington.  ;)

    • Anonymous

      I’m going to use your post to inform people about something and so this will be picked up by Google for others to find on the Net.

      Firstly, there’s no such thing as “grandfathered plans.”  And second, people are mistaken if they think they have any contractual rights once the acquisition takes place.

      Grandfathered Plans: This is a concept started between users in 2006-07.  The carriers have never recognized it. (Ask a CSR if T-Mobile has the right to change, suspend or terminate your talk and/or data plan.  A competent CSR who knows what is what will respond “yes.”)

      Legally, you enjoy old data plan rates “at the pleasure of the carrier,” meaning it can terminate your plan with only a few weeks notice, or no notice.

      Read your terms of service and contract.  There’s NOTHING in there about “grandfathered plans.”

      What is in your contract is that YOU gave the carrier the unilateral right to change, suspend, or terminate your contract, at any time, for any reason, or no reason, and with some carriers, no notice.

      Here’s the relevant clauses, in AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon user agreements.

      Post AT&T acquisition agreements:  Generally on any ACQUISITION (which this is, it’s not a merger albeit AT&T and T-Mobile like to use the term to make it look like T-Mobile customers won’t be getting the shaft) the selling company (here T-Mobile) retains no rights in relation to dealing with customers.  The buyer is free to do what it wants with the purchased company, including selling off all assets, firing all the employees, and requiring T-Mobile customers to go through a credit check and apply for AT&T service.

      In the purchase/sale agreement there may be provisions on what T-Mobile can and can’t do with existing customers or new customers, including what terms and conditions it can obligate itself to follow.  AT&T may also have agreed to honor all T-Mobile contracts, for the term remaining on those contracts.

      BUT THIS BEGS THE QUESTION:  All those contracts that AT&T will supposedly honor include the provision that T-Mobile can terminate the contract for any reason, no reason, with no notice.  Since AT&T will be purchasing your entire contract, it has bought the termination provision too. 

      So legally AT&T post-acquisition can send notice to all T-Mobile customers immediately terminating their contracts and invite them to reapply for service with AT&T. (Of course, the creditworthy customers won’t have to apply, AT&T will send them notice that if they want they can continue service with AT&T.)

      Sidenote: AFAIK, AT&T and T-Mobile have NOT said anything that legally acts as a contractual modification of the above terms and conditions.  Besides, all the agreements you signed said that the agreement can only be modified by a signed addendum to the agreement.  Vague statements made by T-Mobile and AT&T do not constitute legal modifications to the contracts you signed.

      Moreover, the govt. may impose requirements on AT&T, including that it cannot wholesale terminate T-Mobile contracts.  But expect AT&T to use the termination provision as a loophole to get rid of you.  After the acquisition is approved no one in govt. is going to do anything about this, especially if AT&T says “We promised to honor the contracts.  A provision in those contracts gives us the right to terminate accounts.  So we are legal.”

      Better contact Washington.  ;)

      • dave

        Exactly. At&t has no intrest in getting all 34 million tmo customers. But they would love to keep say the 10% with the highest credit scores,dump the rest. That’s a lot of paper work though.easier to just dump all 34 million and let them reapply to at&t or whoever.

      • Anonymous

        I’m aware that Verizon can dump their unlimited plans anytime they like. The likelihood of them doing that a week after they institute tiered data plans (staeting 7/7/2011), however, is slim. I would at least be able to enjoy all-you-can-eat data for a brief period on Verizon.

        at&t, on the other hand, is my eternal nightmare. I left them for T-Mobile last November and have been extremely happy with the switch ever since. My disdain for at&t’s network literally knows no bounds. I was with AT&T Wireless when they were bought out by Cingular and remember all the talk about how the combined forces as the new at&t would be better and that service would improve. Like the age-old adage goes, “Talk is cheap”.

        Although I’m not happy about it, I have very little reason to believe that this buyout won’t happen. They spend millions on lobbyists for a reason, and sadly, the American consumer will be the ones suffering. Does anyone really expect at&t to willingly throw up cell towers in Southwest Texas, Montana, or anywhere else that is sparsely populated in order to fulfill their so-called pledge to bring mobile broadband to more people? I for one do not.

        What everybody needs to realize, as you point out, is that we’re all for the most part royally screwed when it comes to wireless. Utterly and completely screwed.

      • H8stylist

        they can change it of course.  however any changes to your MRC that negatively impacts the customer will allow the customer to leave with no ETF:

        5. Our Rights to Make Changes.  This provision, which describes how changes may be made to your Agreement, is subject to requirements and limitations imposed by applicable law, and will not be enforced to the extent prohibited by law. Your Service is subject to our business policies, practices, and procedures, which we can change without notice.  WE CAN CHANGE ANY TERMS IN THE AGREEMENT AT ANY TIME. YOU MAY CANCEL THE AFFECTED LINE OF SERVICE WITHOUT AN EARLY TERMINATION FEE (if applicable) IF:  (A) WE CHANGE YOUR PRICING IN A MANNER THAT MATERIALLY INCREASES YOUR MONTHLY RECURRING CHARGE(S) (the amount you agreed to pay each month for voice, data and messaging, which does not include overage, pay-per-use or optional services (such as 411, or downloads), or taxes and fees); (B) WE MATERIALLY DECREASE THE SERVICE ALLOTMENTS WE AGREED TO PROVIDE TO YOU FOR YOUR MONTHLY RECURRING CHARGE; OR  (C)  WE MATERIALLY CHANGE A TERM IN THESE T&Cs OTHER THAN PRICING IN A MANNER THAT IS MATERIALLY ADVERSE TO YOU.  WE WILL PROVIDE YOU WITH AT LEAST 30 DAYS’ NOTICE OF ANY CHANGE WARRANTING CANCELLATION OF THE AFFECTED LINE OF SERVICE WITHOUT AN EARLY TERMINATION FEE (WHICH IS YOUR ONLY REMEDY), AND YOU MUST NOTIFY US WITHIN 14 DAYS AFTER YOU RECEIVE THE NOTICE, OR AS OTHERWISE PROVIDED IN THE NOTICE. IF YOU FAIL TO TERMINATE WITHIN THE RELEVANT TIMEFRAME, YOU ACCEPT THE CHANGES.

        • Mopar6464

          Good reply.
          This is what i have been saying all along to others who posted that AT&T don’t have to honor our T-Mobile rate plans when they Buy T-Mobile out.
          If AT&T buys your contract they must honor it OR release you from it with no ETF fees or strings attached if they try to alter the original contract.

        • None

          Mopar, I believe you and I are both on the same page.  The problem, however, is that getting out with no ETF and no strings attached is not as wonderful as it sounds.  You would have to begin service with another carrier (often with a credit check that some will not pass) and pay for new handsets and taxes.
          So just because you have may no ETF does not mean things are perfect.
          That being said, you can get out of TMO contract without ETF as well if you want to.  It is not that hard.  But you would still have to start over with a new carrier.

        • H8stylist

          well, come march next year you are starting over with a new carrier anyway.  however, the point of mike’s post, was to point out that carriers don’t need to honor grandfathered plans.  my point was to agree that they do not need to honor them, however if they change it negatively, you will be released from contract.  

          while it is your choice if the change is enough to leave the carrier or not, you still have one.  they cannot change your plan and laugh cause you are under contract.

        • H8stylist

          well, come march next year you are starting over with a new carrier anyway.  however, the point of mike’s post, was to point out that carriers don’t need to honor grandfathered plans.  my point was to agree that they do not need to honor them, however if they change it negatively, you will be released from contract.  

          while it is your choice if the change is enough to leave the carrier or not, you still have one.  they cannot change your plan and laugh cause you are under contract.

      • None

        I have been saying the same thing for a week now and no one seems to want to hear it.  I think you have said it much better and I hope people listen before they attempt to renew right before they sale is complete.  At least know what contract you are about to sign.

      • Bobh

        Contractually, AT&T can just drop everyone’s tmo plans after a buyout.  They have agreed to honor contracts from tmobile for up to 2 years.  So if you are going to jump tmobile…wait for the contract to be up…you still save money.

      • Bobh

        Contractually, AT&T can just drop everyone’s tmo plans after a buyout.  They have agreed to honor contracts from tmobile for up to 2 years.  So if you are going to jump tmobile…wait for the contract to be up…you still save money.

        • None

          Bobh
          AT&T agreeing to honor your contract is a word game.  In your current TMO contract, there is a provision that TMO can cancel the contract at any time.  AT&T’s word game is that they will honor the contract meaning that (now) AT&T can cancel your contract at any time.  It is likely that I will still renew and ride it out either way.  I have been through more than 1 carrier sale.  It is not that bad.  But I just dont want anyone to think that AT&T has some obligation to you.  They do not. 

        • Bobh

          Agreed…they don’t have to honor everything.  This is a ‘messy’ merger though and AT&T will want to appear to be a ‘nice guy’ by honoring contracts until the client wants to change an plan option or upgrade a phone.  The maximum they would ever have to honor is 2 years. 

          It could publicity if they do.

        • None

          Bobh
          AT&T agreeing to honor your contract is a word game.  In your current TMO contract, there is a provision that TMO can cancel the contract at any time.  AT&T’s word game is that they will honor the contract meaning that (now) AT&T can cancel your contract at any time.  It is likely that I will still renew and ride it out either way.  I have been through more than 1 carrier sale.  It is not that bad.  But I just dont want anyone to think that AT&T has some obligation to you.  They do not. 

    • Anonymous

      I’m going to use your post to inform people about something and so this will be picked up by Google for others to find on the Net.

      Firstly, there’s no such thing as “grandfathered plans.”  And second, people are mistaken if they think they have any contractual rights once the acquisition takes place.

      Grandfathered Plans: This is a concept started between users in 2006-07.  The carriers have never recognized it. (Ask a CSR if T-Mobile has the right to change, suspend or terminate your talk and/or data plan.  A competent CSR who knows what is what will respond “yes.”)

      Legally, you enjoy old data plan rates “at the pleasure of the carrier,” meaning it can terminate your plan with only a few weeks notice, or no notice.

      Read your terms of service and contract.  There’s NOTHING in there about “grandfathered plans.”

      What is in your contract is that YOU gave the carrier the unilateral right to change, suspend, or terminate your contract, at any time, for any reason, or no reason, and with some carriers, no notice.

      Here’s the relevant clauses, in AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon user agreements.

      Post AT&T acquisition agreements:  Generally on any ACQUISITION (which this is, it’s not a merger albeit AT&T and T-Mobile like to use the term to make it look like T-Mobile customers won’t be getting the shaft) the selling company (here T-Mobile) retains no rights in relation to dealing with customers.  The buyer is free to do what it wants with the purchased company, including selling off all assets, firing all the employees, and requiring T-Mobile customers to go through a credit check and apply for AT&T service.

      In the purchase/sale agreement there may be provisions on what T-Mobile can and can’t do with existing customers or new customers, including what terms and conditions it can obligate itself to follow.  AT&T may also have agreed to honor all T-Mobile contracts, for the term remaining on those contracts.

      BUT THIS BEGS THE QUESTION:  All those contracts that AT&T will supposedly honor include the provision that T-Mobile can terminate the contract for any reason, no reason, with no notice.  Since AT&T will be purchasing your entire contract, it has bought the termination provision too. 

      So legally AT&T post-acquisition can send notice to all T-Mobile customers immediately terminating their contracts and invite them to reapply for service with AT&T. (Of course, the creditworthy customers won’t have to apply, AT&T will send them notice that if they want they can continue service with AT&T.)

      Sidenote: AFAIK, AT&T and T-Mobile have NOT said anything that legally acts as a contractual modification of the above terms and conditions.  Besides, all the agreements you signed said that the agreement can only be modified by a signed addendum to the agreement.  Vague statements made by T-Mobile and AT&T do not constitute legal modifications to the contracts you signed.

      Moreover, the govt. may impose requirements on AT&T, including that it cannot wholesale terminate T-Mobile contracts.  But expect AT&T to use the termination provision as a loophole to get rid of you.  After the acquisition is approved no one in govt. is going to do anything about this, especially if AT&T says “We promised to honor the contracts.  A provision in those contracts gives us the right to terminate accounts.  So we are legal.”

      Better contact Washington.  ;)

  • Anonymous

    And to think that I have to jump ship to Verizon before 7/7/2011 in order to get unlimited data grandfathered in.

    Tough decision. Big fan of the Magenta, but they’re really screwing me here. I guess it’s really the Dark Side (AKA at&t) that’s really puttin’ it to me, but seriously, they could have at least had the courtesy to offer a coupon for a reach around (preferably without a two-year contract) when they came up with this whole buyout mumbo-jumbo.

  • Brianb

    Look Deushe Telekon (who own Tmobile USA and a bunch of Tmobiles in Europe) wants to sell of the USA group to make big money (and they are tired of the USA market because of too many regulations and diffuculty getting spectrum and towers built).  AT&T wants a pre-built system that they can improve city cell tower density on and use the 3g bands of Tmo for LTE testing and build out.  It is much cheaper for AT&T to do it this way (Tmo netowkr is national and tmobile did major backhaul work with fiberoptic cable that AT&T hasn’t completed yet on theirs).  AT&T doesn’t care if it loses all the ‘cheap skate’ tmo customers, they want the towers and bandwidth for their premium paying Iphone users.  AT&T doesn’t want ANY Tmo customers really, they want the Tmo hardware and bandwidth.

    Both these companies do well in the deal.  BUT does the consumer do better?  No, AT&T doesn’t usually drop prices anywhere near sprint or tmobile.

    And for everyone who says Tmobile would be bankrupt and scrapped anyway?? WHAT! lol.  Deushe Telekom is work a TON of money in Europe.  They would just repackage it to sell to another Euro power like o2, orange, Vodafone, Telefonica.  All of these companies are actually BIGGER than AT&T.  ACTUALLY, Tmobile World is bigger than AT&T.  In American we think in a box.  There is NOT just AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. 
    Another Euro could come in a buy Tmobile USA from the German’s rename it “orange mobile” (France) and do a better job than the germans of running it.

    THIS would also leave competition in the USA market place for phone.  Please don’t mention all the tiny USA cell companies.  We really only have 4 national cell companies right now (and if the deal goes through we have 2 and half ’cause Sprint will be crippled).  No phone companies will give Sprint decent phones after this deal.
    Oh, and the consumer will no pay AT&T fees of about $30 a month more for the same plans on AT&T.

    How is this good for MOST voting Americans now????

    • karen ellen

      We have used At&T for 30 years.  They used to have great customer service.  Now the wait
      time to change a phone order is 45 minutes most times.  I phoned them and was told they are
      having some internal management issues.  Hah!  and they want to try to service a billion more
      people.  They are not capable of this.  How can we stop this monopoly!

      • Susan

        Email the senators on the board.  You can look them up and it’s easy.  Email FCC board members.  This is in no way better for competition or consumers.

      • Dpro

        See your problem is you fail to realize that what you call AT&T now is not the AT&T you had 30 years ago. Even 10 years ago. SBC bought both AT&T wireless and AT&T landlines. Ma Bell the original does not exist anymore. Bell Labs got sold off to Lucent a French company. SBC owns the AT&T lines and name. When they purchased AT&T land lines they renamed themselves AT%T just so people like you would think you still had AT&T when you don’t.

    • dave

      Right and right! At&t has no interest in tmo customers,just the hardware. If they took tmo customers their systems would still be stressed. Look for them to end all contracts the day the deal is made. Also right on dt,they are making a billion profit yearly in the us right now. Nice but not enough to keep upgrading,the main stockholders want 39 billion now,as opposed to over 39 years.

  • Brianb

    Look Deushe Telekon (who own Tmobile USA and a bunch of Tmobiles in Europe) wants to sell of the USA group to make big money (and they are tired of the USA market because of too many regulations and diffuculty getting spectrum and towers built).  AT&T wants a pre-built system that they can improve city cell tower density on and use the 3g bands of Tmo for LTE testing and build out.  It is much cheaper for AT&T to do it this way (Tmo netowkr is national and tmobile did major backhaul work with fiberoptic cable that AT&T hasn’t completed yet on theirs).  AT&T doesn’t care if it loses all the ‘cheap skate’ tmo customers, they want the towers and bandwidth for their premium paying Iphone users.  AT&T doesn’t want ANY Tmo customers really, they want the Tmo hardware and bandwidth.

    Both these companies do well in the deal.  BUT does the consumer do better?  No, AT&T doesn’t usually drop prices anywhere near sprint or tmobile.

    And for everyone who says Tmobile would be bankrupt and scrapped anyway?? WHAT! lol.  Deushe Telekom is work a TON of money in Europe.  They would just repackage it to sell to another Euro power like o2, orange, Vodafone, Telefonica.  All of these companies are actually BIGGER than AT&T.  ACTUALLY, Tmobile World is bigger than AT&T.  In American we think in a box.  There is NOT just AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. 
    Another Euro could come in a buy Tmobile USA from the German’s rename it “orange mobile” (France) and do a better job than the germans of running it.

    THIS would also leave competition in the USA market place for phone.  Please don’t mention all the tiny USA cell companies.  We really only have 4 national cell companies right now (and if the deal goes through we have 2 and half ’cause Sprint will be crippled).  No phone companies will give Sprint decent phones after this deal.
    Oh, and the consumer will no pay AT&T fees of about $30 a month more for the same plans on AT&T.

    How is this good for MOST voting Americans now????

  • Brianb

    Look Deushe Telekon (who own Tmobile USA and a bunch of Tmobiles in Europe) wants to sell of the USA group to make big money (and they are tired of the USA market because of too many regulations and diffuculty getting spectrum and towers built).  AT&T wants a pre-built system that they can improve city cell tower density on and use the 3g bands of Tmo for LTE testing and build out.  It is much cheaper for AT&T to do it this way (Tmo netowkr is national and tmobile did major backhaul work with fiberoptic cable that AT&T hasn’t completed yet on theirs).  AT&T doesn’t care if it loses all the ‘cheap skate’ tmo customers, they want the towers and bandwidth for their premium paying Iphone users.  AT&T doesn’t want ANY Tmo customers really, they want the Tmo hardware and bandwidth.

    Both these companies do well in the deal.  BUT does the consumer do better?  No, AT&T doesn’t usually drop prices anywhere near sprint or tmobile.

    And for everyone who says Tmobile would be bankrupt and scrapped anyway?? WHAT! lol.  Deushe Telekom is work a TON of money in Europe.  They would just repackage it to sell to another Euro power like o2, orange, Vodafone, Telefonica.  All of these companies are actually BIGGER than AT&T.  ACTUALLY, Tmobile World is bigger than AT&T.  In American we think in a box.  There is NOT just AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. 
    Another Euro could come in a buy Tmobile USA from the German’s rename it “orange mobile” (France) and do a better job than the germans of running it.

    THIS would also leave competition in the USA market place for phone.  Please don’t mention all the tiny USA cell companies.  We really only have 4 national cell companies right now (and if the deal goes through we have 2 and half ’cause Sprint will be crippled).  No phone companies will give Sprint decent phones after this deal.
    Oh, and the consumer will no pay AT&T fees of about $30 a month more for the same plans on AT&T.

    How is this good for MOST voting Americans now????

  • Brianb

    Look Deushe Telekon (who own Tmobile USA and a bunch of Tmobiles in Europe) wants to sell of the USA group to make big money (and they are tired of the USA market because of too many regulations and diffuculty getting spectrum and towers built).  AT&T wants a pre-built system that they can improve city cell tower density on and use the 3g bands of Tmo for LTE testing and build out.  It is much cheaper for AT&T to do it this way (Tmo netowkr is national and tmobile did major backhaul work with fiberoptic cable that AT&T hasn’t completed yet on theirs).  AT&T doesn’t care if it loses all the ‘cheap skate’ tmo customers, they want the towers and bandwidth for their premium paying Iphone users.  AT&T doesn’t want ANY Tmo customers really, they want the Tmo hardware and bandwidth.

    Both these companies do well in the deal.  BUT does the consumer do better?  No, AT&T doesn’t usually drop prices anywhere near sprint or tmobile.

    And for everyone who says Tmobile would be bankrupt and scrapped anyway?? WHAT! lol.  Deushe Telekom is work a TON of money in Europe.  They would just repackage it to sell to another Euro power like o2, orange, Vodafone, Telefonica.  All of these companies are actually BIGGER than AT&T.  ACTUALLY, Tmobile World is bigger than AT&T.  In American we think in a box.  There is NOT just AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. 
    Another Euro could come in a buy Tmobile USA from the German’s rename it “orange mobile” (France) and do a better job than the germans of running it.

    THIS would also leave competition in the USA market place for phone.  Please don’t mention all the tiny USA cell companies.  We really only have 4 national cell companies right now (and if the deal goes through we have 2 and half ’cause Sprint will be crippled).  No phone companies will give Sprint decent phones after this deal.
    Oh, and the consumer will no pay AT&T fees of about $30 a month more for the same plans on AT&T.

    How is this good for MOST voting Americans now????

  • Brianb

    Look Deushe Telekon (who own Tmobile USA and a bunch of Tmobiles in Europe) wants to sell of the USA group to make big money (and they are tired of the USA market because of too many regulations and diffuculty getting spectrum and towers built).  AT&T wants a pre-built system that they can improve city cell tower density on and use the 3g bands of Tmo for LTE testing and build out.  It is much cheaper for AT&T to do it this way (Tmo netowkr is national and tmobile did major backhaul work with fiberoptic cable that AT&T hasn’t completed yet on theirs).  AT&T doesn’t care if it loses all the ‘cheap skate’ tmo customers, they want the towers and bandwidth for their premium paying Iphone users.  AT&T doesn’t want ANY Tmo customers really, they want the Tmo hardware and bandwidth.

    Both these companies do well in the deal.  BUT does the consumer do better?  No, AT&T doesn’t usually drop prices anywhere near sprint or tmobile.

    And for everyone who says Tmobile would be bankrupt and scrapped anyway?? WHAT! lol.  Deushe Telekom is work a TON of money in Europe.  They would just repackage it to sell to another Euro power like o2, orange, Vodafone, Telefonica.  All of these companies are actually BIGGER than AT&T.  ACTUALLY, Tmobile World is bigger than AT&T.  In American we think in a box.  There is NOT just AT&T, Sprint and Verizon. 
    Another Euro could come in a buy Tmobile USA from the German’s rename it “orange mobile” (France) and do a better job than the germans of running it.

    THIS would also leave competition in the USA market place for phone.  Please don’t mention all the tiny USA cell companies.  We really only have 4 national cell companies right now (and if the deal goes through we have 2 and half ’cause Sprint will be crippled).  No phone companies will give Sprint decent phones after this deal.
    Oh, and the consumer will no pay AT&T fees of about $30 a month more for the same plans on AT&T.

    How is this good for MOST voting Americans now????

  • Anonymous

    “AT&T is the second highest donor to members of Congress between 1989 through 2010, at over $46 million, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, including nearly $4 million last election cycle, which comprises donations from the company’s PAC and individuals connected with the organization.”

    All political agenda, I hate politics.

    • Susan

      Yes, and we live in a ‘democracy.’  ;)

    • Susan

      Yes, and we live in a ‘democracy.’  ;)

    • Xs11e

      We live in a republic, not a democracy.

    • Xs11e

      We live in a republic, not a democracy.

    • Xs11e

      We live in a republic, not a democracy.

  • David

    I love T-Mobile and I am with T-Mobile for 10 years. But to be honest they way T-Mobile business these days and the way they act you can tell they are not interested anymore in USA market. They just wanna sell and get out of here.

    When a company mentality become like this then that company is over. So at this point as much as I hate this happen but from what I see from T-Mobile it’s better for us to be AT&T customer instead of “T-Mobile I don’t care anymore” company.

    • Cray820

      Wow I was thinking the exact same thing about T-mobile. They are just trying way too hard to sell out. Its just pure sell out and nothing more.Its not like they dont have the strenth to improve. Its more like they dont want to. Lets not make them give us any more bullcrap and give up on T-mobile the same way they gave up on us. Lets just go our seporate ways to Spring, Verizon, or AT&T. Which ever you may like.

  • Pipsqueako25

    This is just another attempt at posturing and trying to make people believe their argument (pro merger) has merit by an AT&T shill. I’ll believe in the merger WHEN THE DOJ AND FCC ACTUALLY APPROVE SOMETHING….

  • TJ

    Wow, those are really such insulting and dismissive remarks by Sugrue against all of us consumers who are informed and genuinely concerned and strongly opposed to the merger. Saying we’ve all “failed to offer any credible arguments” is ridiculous, short-sided, and further shows the horrible attitude of AT&T and lack of concern toward consumers.