T-Mobile and Sprint execs advocate merger to FCC, focusing on pricing and 5G


Following rumors that Department of Justice staffers have told T-Mobile and Sprint that their merger is unlikely to get approval as it’s currently structured, several T-Mo and Sprint executives paid a visit to Washington D.C. to argue why the deal should be approved.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere, T-Mobile COO Mike Sievert, T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray, Sprint executive chairman Marcelo Claure, and other execs met with FCC commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel last week to present their case in favor of the merger. One of the focuses of the presentation was price, with T-Mo and Sprint saying that if they’re allowed to combine, they’ll “focus on taking share from Verizon and AT&T through lower prices.” T-Mo also pointed to Verizon’s $10 extra charge for 5G, saying that it won’t charge customers extra to use its 5G service.

Another focus of the presentation was network coverage. T-Mobile claims its 5G coverage will be “broad and thin” in 2024 because of “limited spectrum depth on 600MHz” with uncovered POPs at 1.4 percent, while Sprint’s will be “deep but narrow” and “constrained” with uncovered POPs at 41 percent because of “limited 2.5GHz propagation characteristics.” If T-Mobile and Sprint are allowed to merge, though, they’ll have a “broad and deep” 5G network with uncovered POPs at 1 percent and more consumers with access to speeds greater than 100Mbps.

T-Mobile went on to cover many of the same talking points it’s used when promoting the merger in the past. It claims that the New T-Mobile will boost in-home broadband competition using its 5G network and that “massive capacity increases” will bring a “steep reduction” in the price per gigabyte of data.

Prepaid consumers will benefit also benefit from the merger, says T-Mo, because Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile customers will see improvements in coverage and performance and customers of other prepaid carriers will see lower prices as providers “increase investment and enhance services to respond to New T-Mobile’s prepaid offerings.”

Meanwhile, a source speaking to Reuters says that T-Mobile CEO John Legere met last week with Makan Delrahim, head of the DOJ’s antitrust division. The report claims that the DOJ is likely to make a decision on the merger by early June. The FCC is also reviewing the merger and is on day 141 of its 180-day shot clock of the review.

Sources: FCC, Reuters

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  • SlopeTangentAnswer

    They wont charge $10 for 5G bc laying off 28k employees will cover it.

    • Scoobymarklv

      It’s either that or without the merger Sprint will be forced to layoff just as many

      • Robert Roll

        and even worse if Sprint does go under all there 2.5ghz spectrum could get bought up by AT&T and Verizon then you’ll have an even weaker T-Mobile and Verizon and AT&T goes back to there old tricks driving prices up with mediocre service because T-Mobile can not compete with them.

        • Scoobymarklv

          You’re 100% correct

    • JStatt

      The 28k number you pulled out is so flawed. T-Mobile will have to keep most of the retail stores open to service the higher customer volume, except those which obviously overlap in identical markets (as in stores immediately close to one another). They will have to open or expand more customer service centers since T-Mobile uses local CS teams while Sprint employs mostly offshore customer service (particularly India based). They will have to keep almost all of the teams currently focused on deploying spectrum and in fact will need to hire more since they will be undertaking a massive consolidation effort and will be moving to the deployment of 5G and eventually home internet. The only place with arguably significant reduction will be in the more expensive full time corporate positions at Sprint in Overland Park, an unfortunate event but one that is INEVITABLE because Sprint simply will not survive on their own. Corporate Sprint will die regardless, but at least some could stay with new T-Mobile and the Overland Park area will receive a customer service center that will expand the overall number of jobs.

      TLDR: You are full of it. There will be net job additions through the merger and far better competition.

    • slybacon

      How can a company nearly double its subscriber count, but cut its employee count by nearly half? Have you ever ran a business, or even worked for a business? The only way McDonald’s is doing it is by using touch screens to order your food, cause the Liberals are demanding too much money for such little work. If the liberals ran the county, they would eliminate all jobs.

      • Ver

        You are very uninformed. Your remark are insane.

        • slybacon

          And we are all supposed to believe “Ver” is informed?

        • Ver


        • slybacon

          I’m glad we both agree you’re trolling. I’m pro-T-Mobile and you’re anti. Go find a Verizon news site.

        • Ver

          Been with T-Mobile for 16 years. Can you say the same? You get no more replies from me. Knock your lights out..

        • slybacon

          I’ve never heard or read someone say to knock their own lights out. How does that work?

  • ThePhoneGuy

    Who is laying off their employees (offering severance packages) to fund their 5G network/spectrum? Not T-Mobile, they will have all of that with this merger and will need more than 28K reps to service the all the rural customers it will acquire.

  • Gardo

    If this thing gets approved I’m taking my 7 lines to At&t, this is a bad merger as much as they want to sugar coat it and say it’s good.

    • Prode

      lol, you are going to take your 7 lines to the worst of the them all. ATT is crap. I am 100% for this and hope it gets approval. I trust that TMO won’t raise prices for the 3 years after it and after that even if they raise prices, they still offer way more for your money then the others.

    • ThePhoneGuy

      Mergers have been a fact of life in the wireless industry. At&t Wireless and Cingular merged then became Cingular (then back to AT&T). Verizon was a result of a merger between GTE and Bell Atlantic (and other Bell companies). Metro PCS and T-Mobile merged and everything worked out fine. As long as T-Mobile is running the combined company, everything will be alright and the network integration will be spot on. Sprint doesn’t have the best track record with smooth mergers and network refarming (remember the Sprint-Nextel disaster?). The new T-Mobile will have more spectrum and competitive pricing…its a win-win for consumers.

      • Adam

        It’s not just wireless, the most profitable state for a company in any industry is monopoly.

      • Jak Crow

        And all this has happened because our regulators and congress critters have refused to prevent these mergers ever since the original at&t was broken up. After that happened, everyone decided to check out when it came to continue regulating almost every industry to prevent these mega mergers. Now we have no land line competition and little wireless competition. Add in these companies now owning the parts of the also-consolidated media industry, and these markets are just not healthy.

        • ThePhoneGuy

          You’re right about that, but ironically deregulation hasn’t been a congressional success and quite the opposite. Remember the days of AT&T, Sprint, and MCI? They were all supposed to lower long distance costs, but did quite the opposite during their tenure. In an ideal capitalistic market, its always the strong that survive. If congress is dead set on keeping 4 viable competitors, they can always push for a spectrum swap with a company like US Cellular and bring them to the national playings field. Lastly, I also believe that the only way they can allow for this merger to go through is by Sprint selling Boost/Virgin Mobile off to at least keep the prepaid market competitive.

  • Sharti24

    If sprint threatened bankruptcy would this merger go through?

    • Acdc1a

      Depends on whether AT&T and Verizon paid the right people.

    • Nawnp MCPE

      They already have. The only thing worse if if they started filling out the bankruptcy paperwork.

  • Nearmsp

    I am seriously considering Google-Fi after 15+ years with T-mobile. The merger just got me thinking. I do not use much data but do travel overseas and $5.50 extra a data for LTE data is expensive.

    • Nawnp MCPE

      What, T-mobile doesn’t charge for data overseas? It is speed throttled though.

      • Nearmsp

        Google Fi does not charge overseas data. They treat the data the same globally. So instead of 3G data of T-mobile one can get LTE data overseas with Google Fi.

        • Nawnp MCPE

          I know that, I was asking about the $5.50 charge you were listing.

        • Nearmsp

          I pay $5.50 for each one-day pass and 200 MB of data. Could be more. Can’t remember.

        • Nawnp MCPE

          Did not know they offered that. Okay.

  • pda96

    This merger is dead in the water, it seems.

  • Jak Crow

    They keep lying about what they’re going to do. Seems like the DOJ, ironically, isn’t buying it.

  • Chris

    There’s no reason for this not to be approved. The DOJ needs to stop playing games. Sprint definitely isn’t going to survive without the merger. They’re the epitome of trash right now.

  • Willie D

    In the past, mergers have proved only competitive if a new company was entering a market through the acquisition or merger with another smaller but established company that has significant share in that market, thus able to drive down prices.
    Think of CellOne to AT&T to Cingular, Sprint to Nextel, Verizon to Alltel, VoiceStream to TMobile, all of these jacked up competition and lowered prices, to start. But that’s shortlived and prices to pay off a merger, network integration and increase profit and cash flow, start to go up, jobs are cut for cost savings and slowly more and more hidden fees come (TMo already makes bank on SIM Card fees, over phone payments, etc) and Sprint was notorious for $2 charge to talk to customer care, and $36 fees to change devices even if you owned it and did the change online. TMobile has started doing this with $15 MetroPCS charges as well. If you think it will lower prices, it will only do so for a short while, but they go higher after merger to pay for the network itself. Dont think this merger is good. It isnt. The only good thing is denying it and suggesting a network/spectrum sharing agreement not a one sided roaming agreement Sprint has with TMo, but rather TMo adds B41 to their equipment sites and Sprint allows TMo to access that spectrum freely for building it out while Sprint gains a network with coverage to keep most of the B41 capacity to itself. It’s a win win. Split the difference

    • Harlimus

      sprint is done. they are going to go bankrupt without this merger, and we will be left with three carriers. which would you rather have? tmo to merge with sprint? or sprint to go bankrupt and the spectrum get bought up by att/verizon?

  • Nearmsp

    In no other country in the world lack of spectrum is used to buy out companies. Most companies do sharing of network and pay for access. Thus spectrum should not be used a as reason to reduce competition through mergers. Should the government play god and allow companies to merge if one or the other is not doing financially well? No. When stock price falls, a buyer will emerge at the right price.

  • Kevin

    not cool