Sprint Asking State Regulators To Review AT&T/T-Mobile Deal

If Sprint hasn’t already solidified their position as the greatest vocal opponent to the proposed AT&T acquisition of T-Mobile, yesterday’s West Virginia filing may cement it. Sprint has asked West Virginia state regulators to review the proposed $39 billion dollar purchase with Sprint expecting to file similar requests in other states as well.

“Clearly the interest of the public in this state will be adversely affected by the proposed merger because it is anticompetitive and will hurt consumers by raising prices, restricting innovation and limiting choices of wireless providers,” Sprint said in their filing. Sprint says the state of West Virginia has a duty to make sure any deals such as this one do not harm the public interest.

AT&T has asked West Virginia to approve the deal and expressed it’s intent to bring LTE service to customers in West Virginia with more customers able to receive coverage after the deal than without it.

AT&T responded to the Sprint filing:

“AT&T is trying to bring the latest and fastest mobile Internet service to most of the citizens of West Virginia.  Since Sprint is trying to stop that, we hope state officials will ask Sprint what its own plans are for bringing LTE speeds to the people of West Virginia,” J. Michael Schweder, AT&T’s president of the Mid-Atlantic region, said in a statement. “We suspect Sprint either has no such plan, or that its own plans pale in comparison to AT&T’s.  In either case, we’re confident West Virginians will see Sprint’s filing for what it is–a cynical effort to hurt a competitor, even if the ones truly hurt are the many people of West Virginia who would be denied the fast mobile Internet speeds they need and want.”

Its beginning to seem as though every day brings a new chapter in the AT&T/T-Mobile saga.

Fierce Wireless

P.S. I have no idea who to give credit for to the picture above, but whoever you are. you are awesome!

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  • YurDadee

    lol @ Carly and all her new provider dresses… she looks all Goth Status!

  • Mark1207

    I hate A&At.

    • Mopar6464

      I hate Sprint even more.

  • what a crappy photoshop work on Carly.

    • It’s not a professional job, but it’s still pretty funny in my book!

      • Ash

        If you need help doing that, just ask.
        I’m sure many here will be willing and able to help.

  • Anonymous

    This picture looks like it was edited by a 3 year old using Paint. Terrible…

  • Toeshot

    I wonder if AT&T can bring this LTE to West Virginia without the purchase of T-Mobile

    • Mrbonez

      Maybe AT&T can use that 39 billion to upgrade their LTE network without buying out T-Mobile and screwing us loyal T-Mo customers

  • Don;t mess with Carly….

  • Anonymous


    I’m starting to believe that the deal is not looking good for att.

  • “AT&T is trying to bring the latest and fastest mobile Internet service to most of the citizens of West Virginia.”

    Here the what the small print says ” at 2GB data cap, there is a $15 per GB over fee, plus to tether there is a additional $30 fee on top of that”

    Who wants At&t crappy LTE service with those restrictions?

    P.S. These are just my guess as what At&t will do based on past experience.

    • Ash

      You are correct, and I’m sure even worst.

  • ColoradoGray

    Heh… T-mobike pretty much doesn’t exist in West Virginia to begin with.

  • Eric

    horrible mspaint work, but Carly would look great no matter what color she wore ;)

  • Techguy

    Does it matter that T-Mobile has no presence in West Virginia other than roaming?

  • Izzybrexx

    Black n yellow, black n yellow,black n yellow!……lol

  • william

    forgive my ignorance, but why is sprint against the merger, won’t that bring them more customers that don’t want to pay at&t prices?

    • Ctkatz

      If the merger goes through sprint becomes the very very distant third carrier, so much so that tmo customers joining en masse wouldn’t put a dent in the gap even if they get some benefit from the deal.

  • msprinkl

    Not a good look for her…..

  • TMoFan

    I think it’s great that someone out there is rallying against this even though Sprint is just doing this because it was suppose to be them and T-Mobile and not a complete sell-out to at&t. Also by Sprint making a fuss they stand to gain from any divestitures that at&t will have to make in order to get this done.

    at&t is so phony with their LTE spin. They knew DT was talking with Sprint and simply overpaid for T-Mobile to take out a competitor and put Sprint in a tough position to compete.

    Carly still looks good though no matter what!

    • I wish people realized how much of a joke AT&T playing up LTE is. LTE is expected to top out at 100 Mb while experts believe WiMax will be able to reach 1Gb down. Sprint should be asking AT&T what their WiMax plans are. The Big Two went with LTE because it was a more natural [read “cheaper”] transition from the existing mobile technology, not because it is faster.

  • IamtherealDavid

    This is all for the masses and those that make love to their phones. It is a done deal. I have seen more of these than i care to remember.

    The store reps have already been told to prepare for the worst.

    I, for one, say things cant get worse. Just today at lunch, my friend pulled 1.2M on his iphone. Standard ATT. I pulled 2.2 on the touted network. Pa-lease. This is so old. My G2 gets a battery pull a week and apparently from what I have read here, I am not the only one.

    His iphone is a rock. That other poster was right. Apple has us beat. One phone, one tablet a year and you have the latest and greatest. Apple plus LTE equals no TMO.

    Peace out my brother.

    • Maschwar77

      Really? Well, I pulled a respectable 5MB down and 2.2 up on the 4G network. I am happy.

    • Fruitbasket

      Sounds like you have bigger issues. I DON’T battey pull a week on my g2 and I pull consistant 4mbs dl and just saw a 9.3mbs earlier today. I eat iphones for lunch with spped tests and have recently added a thunderbolt and captivate to the list. Just because you got a bad apple don’t cut down the tree.

  • Carl

    Sorry but that picture is not that great… If you need something special photoshopped let me know and I’ll get it done right and make it look a bit more realistic than that. The yellow hurts my eyes.
    Great insight about sprint though!

    • I agree, anyone that knows what they’re doing with photoshop could do a MUCH better job.

      • Don’t knock the work of the person who did this, I didn’t post it because of the quality of the picture, just the image of Carly in Sprint colors for the article was seemingly appropriate.

        • Oh come now, what i said was downright tame compared to what i COULD have said about it. I’m a digital arts major, being a critic of other works is a part of what i do. And besides, this is the internet. It isn’t exactly know for it’s kindness.

        • Realcool2000

          Sounds to me like if you spent more time being positive and less time criticising others, all the girls that look like Carly would actually talk to you instead of saying ” what a dip$%#*”, lol.

        • you’re absolutely right, i’ll never attract women if i continue to post slightly rude comments on a web page about cellphones.

          LMAO, seriously dude?

    • Maschwar77

      You know what, everyone is a critic. It is decent enough – lay off. You’re far from perfect.

    • Realcool2000

      Sounds to me like if you spent more time being positive and less time criticising others, all the girls that look like Carly would actually talk to you instead of saying ” what a dip$%#*”, lol.

  • I hope Sprint is successful in helping to block this deal.

    This deal is horrific for T-Mobile customers. My off-contra­ct T-Mobile plan won’t exist under AT&T. My phone’s 3G capabiliti­es won’t be supported by AT&T, forcing me to purchase a new phone (my current phone is a Nexus One and I want to keep it for a long time).

    If AT&T were serious about expanding and upgrading its network, then it would be great. But instead they choose to impose ridiculous caps and charge unreasonab­le rates. AT&T has the worst service, the worst customer service and the worst vision for the future.

  • Auser72

    A enemy of my enemy is a friend of mine. Loving SPRINT right now..:-)

    • ha me too, if the merger goes through i’m most likely going to Sprint. My mom hates ATT and i hate Verizon, so Sprint is our only other (major) option.

  • I’m a spokesman of Sprint and honestly, I don’t know what is AT&T afraid of in West Virginia.

    All Sprint has asked the West Virginia Public Service Commission to do is to hold a public hearing about their planned takeover of T-Mobile. Is AT&T afraid of what such a hearing would uncover?

    Consumers in West Virginia deserve to know what the T-Mobile takeover means for wireless prices, handset selection and mobile broadband coverage. We are hopeful that the West Virginia Public Service Commission will give consumers across the Mountain State that opportunity.

    John Taylor
    Public Affairs
    Twitter: @jbtaylor

    • Please keep filing these requests in as many states as possible. In truth it’s hard to find a company with less concern for consumers than AT&T. They’ve built their company from shrewd M&A, never from quality service. I had the horror of being with them after they gobbled up Cingular and the fortuity of being at the end of my T-Mo contract right as this proposed merger was announced. I was saddened to leave T-Mobile, but Sprint has been great so far.

    • Anonymous

      is there a possibility of sprint buying tmobile?

  • Basically AT&T defense is, Sprint doesn’t have LTE so they can’t bring it to you. They only have WiMax. DUH! lol, however Sprint may be getting LTE soon ;)

    • Spooln3

      No, AT&T’s defense is that Sprint is basically sitting here bitching about the merger between T-Mo and AT&T because they were trying to by T-Mo and didn’t bring enough money to the table, and are now acting like that kid in the sand box that didnt get to play a specific toy. The face that the benefits its new service would bring to the states affected by it, and the fact that sprint has no immediate or future plans to provide the same service to customers of said states is something that absolutely should be called out.

      No one knows what the price plans are going to be, so why speculate, I can say it wont matter cause in a few years we will all be living on the moon but that is just me thinking and giving my opinion, same as Sprint and all their assumptions.

      • Actually I’m pretty sure Sprint does have plans…they just don’t make the public said if they don’t meet everyone’s expectations or meet their goal date no one can get mad at them. I guarantee AT&T will never meet 95% of the nation covered in LTE even with T-Mobile in the next 5 years.

        • Spooln3

          Every company has a road map, of what their network looks like, and what they plan on doing, it is also known that Sprint is dependent on Clear for the expansion of their “4g” network, which, is on the verge if not already filing, of bankruptcy. If Sprint had plans to increase their coverage, it would be known, companies dont say things about certain items, such as hand sets or price plans, Network upgrades do NOT fall under that category.

        • Look up “Project Leapfrog.” Goodbye

  • Anonymous

    Here’s a detailed story, from Wireless Week.

    “Sprint has taken its fight against AT&T’s merger with T-Mobile USA to the states.

    On Monday, Sprint’s attorneys in West Virginia asked the state’s Public Service Commission to open an investigation into the deal.

    ‘This Commission should carefully weigh any alleged benefits of the merger against harms to West Virginia consumers and the wireless market generally,’ the company said in documents filed with the commission.

    Sprint told the state that AT&T’s acquisition of T-Mobile USA would limit consumer choice and undermine competition, and urged officials to conduct a “thorough investigation” into the transaction.

    AT&T filed documents in West Virginia on April 21 asking the state to either approve its merger with T-Mobile or exempt the deal from an official review.

    Sprint spokesman John Taylor (yes, the John Taylor who posted in here!) suggested the company would ask additional states to review the deal as AT&T sought further approvals from state commissions. ‘We feel very strongly that approval of the transaction is not in the best interest of consumers in West Virginia,’ Taylor said.

    AT&T issued a terse rebuttal to Sprint’s filing that criticized Sprint’s mobile broadband strategy in the state – AT&T plans to launch LTE in West Virginia, but Sprint’s WiMAX plans in the state are currently on hold as it waits for Clearwire to expand its network.

    ‘We hope state officials will ask Sprint what its own plans are for bringing LTE speeds to the people of West Virginia. We suspect Sprint either has no such plan, or that its own plans pale in comparison to AT&T’s,’ said Michael Schweder, AT&T’s president of its mid-Atlantic region, in a post on the company’s public policy blog. ‘In either case, we’re confident West Virginians will see Sprint’s filing for what it is – a cynical effort to hurt a competitor, even if the ones truly hurt are the many people of West Virginia who would be denied the fast mobile Internet speeds they need and want.’

    AT&T reportedly plans to file paperwork in about six other states asking commissions to approve its acquisition of T-Mobile. The company may choose to file for approval with state commissioners to avoid raising additional ire over its merger with T-Mobile since its obligation to do so under state law is somewhat ambiguous

    Some states prohibit their commissioners from reviewing transactions like AT&T’s buyout of T-Mobile, but laws differ in other states.

    Other states require telephone service providers to get approval from the state’s public utilities commissioner before a merger can go through, but since many of those laws were written before the creation of the wireless industry, state jurisdiction over deals like AT&T’s acquisition of T-Mobile is uncertain.

    Verizon, for its part, reportedly did not ask West Virginia’s Public Service Commission for approval when working to close its merger with Alltel in 2008.”

  • Anonymous

    As I keep saying, the opposition to this deal is unprecedented, at least in the wireless industry.

    And good call by Sprint, going to each State with commissioners who have jurisdiction to nix the deal in that State.

    Sidenote: I’m surprised this is an avenue of attack. I would assume the fed has exclusive jurisdiction over matters like this (involving interstate commerce) and that any decision the fed reaches would preempt anything a State might do.

    • More evidence in Sprint not spending money wisely.

    • Vibrant Addict

      I would say if some states don’t approve then that carrier would no longer be allowed to have any business there under their new upcoming reign?

      If anything the more states that refuse the better as the feds will see that not everyone supports it.

  • Anonymous

    To be sure, evidence of AT&T is not a consumer oriented company is the fact that they tossed unlimited plans and went to tiered data.

    And it was AT&T who went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court where it successfully stripped away the consumers’ right to seek redress on claims too small for an individual to pursue. (The SCOTUS banned class actions if a company had you sign an arbitration agreement. On this decision expect to see all companies have you sign arbitration agreements, if they have not already. Look for an insert with your next bill or phone purchase.)

    In other words, AT&T can cheat each customer out of $10, knowing they will suffer a class action suite for stealing $500 million in total.

    There’s only one reason AT&T pursued that case, it was to cheat people with impunity.


    • guest

      T-mobile also has a mandatory arbitration clause in their contracts… has for a long while now… If you ever call in to do a two year contract over the phone with T-mobile, you are conferenced into an automated system that point-blank states that you agree to mandatory arbitration…

  • Sprint just wants Carly for themselves but she’s all mime! Mine I tell you! Hey Sprint you had your chance. As Homer says “Duh”.

  • E Hugus

    AT&T’s additude as stated in this response is a huge reason to stop this merger. Their statements send shivers down my spine. As a customer I do not want this company in charge of my privacy and my phone calls. The customer is not important here.

    • Guest

      Unfortunately, always putting the customer first is turning out to be a failed business model.. A prime example of this would be T-mobile itself.. I don’ think anyone can say that giving the customers everything they want, regardless of whether it’s the customer’s own fault, has worked out too good for Big Magenta… were it otherwise, it would be T-mobile buying ATT… not the other way around..

  • Anonymous

    at&t forgot to throw in how they are going to rip people off for the ‘fast mobile internet speeds’ with caps and outrageous prices.. basically, pay more for less.

  • Joey

    Just wondering what you so called business majors think will happen if the deal doesn’t go through? Yep you’re right. DT will just go looking for another company who wants to buy them. They don’t care about you. They were only cheap because they know they couldn’t compete on the other stuff wireless networks do.

    T-Mobile’s glory days are over. If the ONLY reason you are with T-Mobile is for the cheap prices then say hello to Metro PCS.

    It’s better to fight for concessions not to kill the deal. Sprint is once again proving how foolish its management team is with its resources. Sprint has the perfect opportunity to use this distraction to built out an LTE network but it’s focusing all its money and lobbying power to stop something that will eventually go through anyway. Verizon on the other hand will remain undistracted and carry on as usual.

    Stupid Sprint. Even when a perfect opportunity is staring them straight in the face they run the other way.

  • I think if sprint would waive deposits and offer free android devices with trade in of your now useless T-mobile android devices once the merger is final they would get millions jumping on their service as long as they keep their $80 REAL unlimited plan. I know they would get my Sidekick 4G for sure.

  • Vibrant Addict

    I like the story….but I HATE that picture. Terrible, she doesn’t look good in anything but Magenta pink in phone ads.