T-Mobile says Sprint merger and 5G will enable it to lower prices

tmobile5gmagenta

One of the popular arguments against the proposed merger of T-Mobile and Sprint is that if approved, the deal could lead to less competition and higher prices. T-Mo doesn’t see it that way.

T-Mobile COO Mike Sievert claims that if his company is allowed to combine with Sprint and gets access to Sprint’s spectrum for use with 5G, the result will be cheaper wireless service. “With that kind of capacity, we’ll be able to afford to give Americans network service and wireless service at lower prices than we’ve ever seen before,” Sievert said in an interview with CNET.

T-Mobile already plans to deploy 5G coverage with its 600MHz and millimeter wave (mmWave) spectrum, but it’s said that with Sprint’s 2.5GHz spectrum, the two companies would be able to create “the highest capacity mobile network in U.S. history“. T-Mo and Sprint have also claimed that their merger will be good for job growth, with plans to invest up to $40 billion in its network and business in the first three years.

Opponents of the merger are concerned about what it would do with regard to competition in U.S. wireless, not only reducing the number of major U.S. carriers from 4 to 3 but also having a major effect on the prepaid market. For example, Boost Mobile founder Peter Adderton has argued that Boost and MetroPCS are currently aggressively competing for customers, but that that could go away if the T-Mobile-Sprint merger goes through.

Regulators are currently reviewing the proposed merger of T-Mobile and Sprint, and the FCC has begun its 180-day shot clock. The FCC is now taking public comments on the deal, and will continue to do so through August 27th.

Source: CNET

Tags: , , ,

  • Iphart

    I rather they improve service in major cities (indoors) not just in rural areas.

    • marque2

      I would rather be a hammer than a nail.

      Seriously though. Tmo was horrible in rural areas – on interstates, they are much improved now, but it is still not possible to get signal for more than 100 miles on most interstate roads. I am hoping that they fix it soon because it will allow me to stream my whole trip when I drive from San Diego to Tucson every other week.

      As for cities, I agree with you, some areas are great, some are horrible. Oceanside/Carlsbad, CA part of the San Diego metro has atrocious signal for an urban area. Here in Tucson, AZ, there are huge dead zones, including my apartment complex which is just off a fairly major road. Dallas/ Ft Worth area though is almost perfect.

  • steveb944

    That’s what they all say…

    • marque2

      That is “That’s what she said ..” ^ n

  • francob911 .

    Jaja they wont lower down prices if anything the prices will increase. All 3 major carriers will come to an agreement and have similar high prices.

    • slybacon

      That’s illegal.

      • J.J.

        Yes because companies never do illegal things!

        • slybacon

          By the time there are three “major” wireless providers in the US, Space X’s global satelite internet will be operational and you won’t need a “national” wireless carrier anymore. Oh, but then there will only be one internet provider and then we are all screwed

        • marque2

          Dude, the only reason Musk companies are even vaguely afloat is that they receive billions in government subsidies, 5 billion + so far, and Musk still can’t produce cars at a reasonable rate with reasonable quality. Tesla will probably go under in about a year (purchased by one of the majors) The Solar City unit has already flopped, and SpaceX – well there is a 50 – 50 shot, if the company doesn’t go bankrupt as well, of getting a satellite into the air. Hopefully the satellites are made cheap.
          He is a very charismatic person (at least on the outside) and can convince people magic is real, but on the inside things are not going well.

        • marque2

          No that is grossly illegal, and they won’t even want to look like they could be colluding. CEO’s can actually go to jail for that. And the government is very aggressive about prosecuting collusion crimes.

          You got to get that socialist anti business nonsense that you learned in school out of your head, it just isn’t true.

        • J.J.

          business owner here. and thank you for labeling me as socialist /anti business nonsensical person, and informing me what i learned in school based on a 7 word post on a tech forum. geesh!

        • marque2

          If you don’t want the label stop saying stupid anti business things. Seriously writing daft posts like you did, makes it seem like you are at best virtue signaling to the socialist crowd. Let the government run those businesses, yours included, because, well you know how those corporate leaders lie.
          Anyway, short answer to your compliant. – If the shoe fits.

        • J.J.

          If me insinuating that companies do sometimes lie/do illegal activity is a “stupid anti business thing” that signals I want the government to run business then I must not have your specific grasp on the English language. Good day!

  • Jason Caprio

    Is it any surprise that T-Mobile wants to promise everybody rainbows and unicorns to convince everybody to support the merger? Mark my words, if this merger goes through, it will be a dark day for the wireless industry in the USA.

    Look what is happening in Canada. They have 3 major providers, Rogers, Bell, and Telus. Each of them has roughly the same number of subscribers, and their prices are through the roof. There are no Unlimited plans. I checked the Bell Mobility website and a 15GB plan is roughly $175/month.

    Although I’m sure this would not happen in the USA, having 3 equally powerful providers will get rid of any real competition. I’m seriously hoping I’m just being delusional here.

    • taxandspend

      That’s the definition of competition – having equals competing. There’s no competition when your competitors aren’t equal. That’s why highschool football teams don’t play pro football teams.

      • Jason Caprio

        I have to disagree. Have you ever heard of Pats King of Steaks and Geno’s Steaks in Philadelphia? They are “equal competitors” directly across from each other but they make damn sure to match each others’ high prices.

        • taxandspend

          Yeah, so they need a third place that makes the same caliber food.

        • PC_Tool

          Sounds like you need to open a steak joint…

        • slybacon

          Exactly! Perfect time for a new competitor to enter the market. Competition is natural and it will occur naturally cause the demand for lower prices is there.

        • nathan

          the t mobile merger will open a place for a new company to move in. a company that hopefully does a better job then sprint.

        • J.J.

          Exactly!

        • iCrap

          That’s basically what will happen. If tmo doesn’t get sprint, att and Verizon will. Would you rather tmo grow to att and Verizon size company? Or att and Verizon gr even bigger than they are now?

        • marque2

          Someone will at auction during the bankruptcy proceedings.

        • slybacon

          Demand drives prices, not location. Don’t eat there and the prices will go down, same way Verizon’s prices decreased over the last year or two and data went to unlimited cause people weren’t “eating” at verizon as much anymore.

        • Jason Caprio

          Do you actually do research before you post these claims? People are “eating” at Verizon more than ever. Here are some statistics for you. Total added customers between Q2 2013 and Q2 2018:

          Verizon – Added 34.46M – Total customers 152.65M
          AT&T – Added 39.38M – Total customers 147.26M
          T-Mobile – Added 31.6M – Total customers 75.62M
          Sprint – Added 0.44M – Total customers 53.7M

          Sprint is definitely the biggest loser here lol. A combined Sprint/T-Mobile today would have 129.32M Customers. I suppose that would even things up a bit. I guess the lesser of two evils is T-Mobile to merge with Sprint instead of sprint going bankrupt and having their spectrum gobbled up by Verizon and AT&T at an auction.

        • marque2

          Yeah, the AT&T rise surprised me. They have actually been losing or stagnant for years, and then all of a sudden, pop 39 million more people. I wonder if it is some gimmick, or if they are being more aggressive about bundling. I know they will offer me direct TV now for free if I have an AT&T cell.

          Alas Tmo won’t even give me netflix for free, because they convinced me to go on the business plan – which offers nothing special, but then they don’t offer Netflix, because that is for consumer plans.

        • MindFog2287

          Last time I called DirecTV, a rep offered me $3900 to switch to AT&T (six lines). I didn’t believe her.

    • francob911 .

      Thats correct a similar thing going on in France. Maybe it will go down for the 1st year or 2. I sure hope this doesnt happen sure service will improve, But T-Mobile is improving even without Sprint , No matter what all Carriers will improve.

      • slybacon

        I agree, “no matter what all carriers will improve” (whether there are 3 or 4).

      • nathan

        sprint was about to go bankrupt in a couple years until this merger

    • PC_Tool

      The thing is though; they are entirely different markets.

      Cable providers in the US are now getting into Wireless. Wireless providers in the US are now getting into home-internet (among many other things).

      It’s evolving into something other than “the big 4/3/whatever” because now (soon) they will also be competing with Comcast and the like, opening up the “field of competition” to much more than just 3 or 4.

    • slybacon

      Each of Canada’s major wireless networks have about 9 million customers is all! Crazy low amount of people for such a huge area to cover. Costs aren’t high because there are only three major networks and they are colluding on prices. They are high to support such a large network for only a few people. Canada would benefit from combining two or all three of those networks into one. All three networks essentially overlap, yet they can only collect money from 1/3 of the population. Doesn’t make a lot of economic sense to do that. If one carrier had 3/3 of the customers, their network would be essentially the same, but could operate cheaper per customer. Either prices go down, or network investment and expansion goes up.

      • Jason Caprio

        Your points are very flawed. Under your logic, Verizon with more than double the customers as T-Mobile should be less than half the price because they have more customers so they can divide up their network costs evenly per customer.

        Bell and Telus in Canada actually share towers and spectrum. Right there is 2 networks combined into 1, and prices are still insanely high.

        There is a reason why there are monopoly laws. Could you imagine what would happen if Verizon and AT&T merged? They would be unstoppable and T-Mobile/Sprint would be liquidating their assets to them because they’d go bankrupt.

        • taxandspend

          No, because Verizon covers more area, has covered it for longer, and has backup generators installed at their sites.

        • marque2

          Verizon is the only one with backup generators or batteries? Seems doubtful.

        • slybacon

          Your points are flawless!!! Is Canada’s wireless market over-priced? I don’t think so. For how few customers each one has and how much area they have to cover, I’d say their pricing is fair.
          I didn’t say prices decrease by half. I did say prices would decrease or network investment would increase. Verizon has huge operating costs (bigger network, right? Better network, right? They pay their investors billions of dollars every quarter in dividends). More Verizon customers would decrease operating costs per customer and increase EBITDA Why would ATT/Verizon be unstoppable and T-Mo/Sprint would liquidate? Are you saying that consumers would prefer ATT/Verizon over everyone else just because they are larger? And prices would increase because they are larger? And consumers would stick with the higher priced service because they are larger?? You don’t understand consumers very well. Consumers are not as trendy as you think. Most will look for better deals if they think they are overpaying.

        • Jason Caprio

          Canada only has a population of 36M people, furthermore, if you cross reference a population density map of Canada with a cell coverage map, you will see the coverage is generally where the population is. Most provinces barely have any coverage in the wilderness except for Alberta. I see where you are coming from, but I highly doubt Canadian cell providers are being anything other than greedy with their insane per-gigabyte pricing.

        • Trevnerdio

          Can I just say though that that works out big time for Telus? I just spent a week in Canada and Telus’ coverage was pretty awesome. Got it for free through T-Mobile and they hardly even throttled me. Got speeds northward of 50mbps even out in little ol’ Bowmanville/Clarington

        • marque2

          I can see prices being high in Canada. Not many people but lots of area to cover. Also the reason why USA has a disadvantage over Europe. Europe has at least twice the population density of the US, so you need less infrastructure to cover the populus.

    • iCrap

      I think if musk gets his low orbit satellite project off the ground, you would have real competition. Remember this too, neither sprint nor tmo offer real home internet service now. Att and Verizon do. This merger would not only create a company that can go toe to toe with Verizon and att, but start going toe to toe with cable and telecom companies as well. Sprint is going under with outdoor this merger. I’d rather this merger go through, than give Verizon and att a chance to pick sprints carcass

      • marque2

        Musk is about to run Tesla into the ground along with the remnants of Solar City.

        It does look like cable companies might enter the foray, since they have been hoarding spectrum. Or they might be able to do a joint marketing. You get our Comcast spectrum but have to let us MNVO on your system.

        • nathan

          you are wrong Tesla will be profitable this quarter

        • marque2

          You might be right but real analysts said they will lose another billion in the next year and will have trouble getting financing.

          There could always be an angel (as in someone with bucks to spare) that shows up to gives them the funds. More likely they will he purchased by one of the majors.

    • Lit

      I think if you’re locked into a plan with no taxes/fees, you should be good. I’ve been with Tmobile for 10 years. They’ve been good with grandfathered plans.

      • SirStephenH

        Newer plans don’t have grandfathered pricing though, only a two year guarantee.

    • riverhorse

      Delusional or not, what is the point? You’re imagining the worst, and it doesn’t affect you because you are grandfathered in permanently.
      Maybe from a social justice perspective–hoping future customers can ALL get identical bargain in perpetuity.
      If Chicken Little had fathered offspring with Mother Theresa, that would be their message.

  • Google Sony Android OS

    Regardless given time there will be only 3 eventually, I can’t envision pricing rising regardless of competition. So, it seems a bigger 3rd (merged entity) would be poised to better compete, offer a threat.

    • nathan

      correct sprint was about to go bankrupt in a couple years until this merger

  • J.J.

    Riiiiight!

    • Durandal_1707

      My reaction exactly. How dumb do they think we are?

  • Francisco Peña

    Its all word games. We will get the lowest prices we’ve ever seen ON 5G service. Not lowest prices ever.

    So he expects to be the lowest prices on the 5G service, but not necessarily on 4G.

    • marque2

      Well yeah, and a Baskin Robins ice cream cost 23 cents when I was 8 years old.

      Of course, Tmo will be able to make a competitive 5g offering with Sprint where they would make a half crocked effort without, which would allow AT&T and Verizon to charge more.

      If you pine for cheap 2g – I would guess you are correct, this merger would end that.

      • Francisco Peña

        no one was talking about 1932 prices. :P
        No one is saying they can’t do 5G.
        What I was saying is that don’t expect the lowest prices ever.. as in overall, for all time past. the only way they will be lower is comparing apples to apples, which in this case is prices that ATT/VZW will charge for 5G, to TMo’s 5G. that is the lowest price ever.. not lowest price we’ve seen so far on 4G.

        • marque2

          I am just happy that I can still post at my advanced age.

          I know what you are talking about. But I find it acceptable. I remember 5 years ago I paid $30 a month for my phone, which gave me 5 gigs data and 100 minutes talking and 100 megs tethering/hotspot. Now I pay about $45 a month (both are family plans) and get 50gigs data, unlimited calling, and due to some deal at sign up 10gigs of high speed tethering/hotspot + Netflix. No doubt my bill is slightly higher, but I find the added benefits worth it, and if I were to really search I could still find $30 deals out there.

          So I would guess Tmo would charge my family $55 per phone on average for 5g – but then they would probably throw something in that I find worth it – free home internet for example – which might end up saving me money since COX charges about 90 bucks a month for fairly basic service.

          Anyway, get off my lawn :P

  • TaskForce141

    Meanwhile, Verizon is going the other way: their 5G rollout is aimed at the fixed home broadband market (at least at first). They’re going after the true cord-cutter; people glad to ditch Comcast/Charter cable or their local DSL.

    • marque2

      I think they are all going to home and mobile. Verizon chose to do fixed home first, whereas Tmo is going to do both together – hinting they will package home service at a “great rate” with the family package.

      I don’t know if they can support it however. I was looking into just using tmo for home service now – because they do provide it now and it is good enough to see video, but it is only practical if you use less than 50 gigs a month. I thought that is all my family uses, but turns out we average 250 gigs a month! We aren’t the heaviest users either. If my family is typical, that is a lot of data to put on the airwaves.

      • nathan

        you need t mobile one plus international its $25 more a month and allows you to tether at 4g lte speeds unlimited no slow down. i have it and use about 300gigs a month no issues.

  • Sayahh

    5G rollout = even faster breaches!

  • Jason Caprio

    Well, my work pays for my Verizon haha. My fiancee is on a T-Mobile family plan with her parents on an old grandfathered Simple Choice 2GB plan. 3 lines and pays about $90/month + $15 in taxes.

    • riverhorse

      Your concern is valid, as your situation is precarious. When you need to pony up I recommend Teltik. It’s prepaid Tmo with almost all the perks, and at a discount .

  • riverhorse

    I suspected JC didn’t have Tmo, which made his post even more puzzling, but now I understand the concern…

  • Al Beto O

    Hi just as said the Mexico has 3 mobile carriers Telcel the monopoly, AT&T purchased the Mexican Nextel and Iusacell a few years ago. AT&T trying to make more prices competive, and Movistar a Spanish carrier which is the same as Sprint. All 3 carrier offer unlimited talk and text also unlited social media (whattsapp,FB,instagram and so on). All 3 offer roaming in Canada and the USA. AT&T is the best 3 months of roaming in the USA and put prepaid air time and do not lose your number. Mexican AT&T has their prepaid brand Unefon (like Cricket) offers Talk text and unlimited data for about 50 cents a day one catch just in Mexico. Plans vary for example 28 days on AT&T is about 7 dollars to 8 depending on the exchange. There are other have more or less days. So a merger might be better. Also MVNO are available Oui mobile, Virgin Mobile, and Flash mobile, Simple mobile also has unlimted data in Mexico for about 35 dollars and tethering in the USA or Canada 2500 megabytes and 5 gigs on roaming there are few more out there also.

  • Kevin Wu

    Hope T-mobile and Sprint don’t merge. It would be bad for the consumer. T-mobile already have enough spectrum for 5g (remember 600mhz spectrum they won). They are just using 5g network excuse to merge and eliminate competition. If they do merger, FCC should divest all 2.5ghz spectrum as condition.

    • nathan

      sprint is not competition they where about to go bankrupt in a couple years. a small cellphone company will fill sprints place and probably do a better job. t mobile has a hard time competing against att and verizon because how big they are this will put them on a even playing field.

      • Kevin Wu

        Sprint wiill not go bankrupted because it is owned by Softbank and Softbank has money to save Sprint. I am sure they wouldn’t want to let their investment die.