FCC Chairman again voices support for T-Mobile-Sprint merger, calls lawsuit against it ‘misguided’

ajit-pai-fcc

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has once again voiced his support of T-Mobile and Sprint’s merger.

Speaking to the New York State Wireless Association recently, Pai talked about 5G and how the FCC is working to accelerate its deployment in the U.S. One of the pillars of T-Mobile and Sprint’s merger is how they plan to use their combined spectrum to deploy a nationwide 5G network, and Pai said during his remarks that “one of the most critical steps that the FCC can take is to approve the T-Mobile/Sprint transaction.”

Pai went on to say that Sprint has lots of mid-band spectrum, but that “the company standing alone does not have the capacity to deploy 5G in this spectrum throughout large parts of rural America.” The combined T-Mobile-Sprint will have the capacity to do that, Pai claimed, pointing to a T-Mo and Sprint commitment to deploy mid-band 5G to 88 percent of the U.S. population, including two-thirds of rural consumers. “We should seize the opportunity to provide 5G to rural America and close the digital divide,” Pai said.

The FCC Chairmen went on to talk about the lawsuit filed by state attorneys general from 14 states and Washington D.C. that seeks to block the T-Mobile-Sprint merger, calling it “misguided” and saying that he hopes it fails. “And make no mistake about it, government officials trying to block this transaction are working to stop many upstate New Yorkers and other rural Americans from getting access to fast mobile broadband and all of the benefits that come with it,” Pai said.

The state attorneys general involved in the lawsuit argue that the T-Mobile-Sprint merger will lessen competition and that prices are likely to be higher if the merger is approved. They also claim that the merger will harm independent wireless dealers and that the consolidation will lead to a loss of retail jobs.

Ajit Pai first came out in support of T-Mobile and Sprint’s merger last month when the two carriers made commitments tied to the deal’s completion. T-Mo and Sprint have said that they’d sell Boost Mobile, commit to meeting 5G and in-home broadband rollout goals, and no raise prices for three years. Both Pai and FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr have come out in support of the merger, but it’s still being review by the U.S. Department of Justice, which rumors say want T-Mo and Sprint to help create a competitive fourth U.S. carrier before it will approve the merger.

Thanks, Ben!

Source: FCC

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  • StevenM

    Pai: “And make no mistake about it, government officials trying to block
    this transaction are working to stop many upstate New Yorkers and other
    rural Americans from getting access to fast mobile broadband and all of
    the benefits that come with it,”

    The truth is many Americans (my family included in their small town) already don’t have access to fast mobile broadband (or even fast wired broadband) and although the merger doesn’t guarantee they’ll have it after, they are certain to never have it if the merger doesn’t go through.

    • Fabian Cortez

      The truth is many Americans (my family included in their small town)
      already don’t have access to fast mobile broadband (or even fast wired
      broadband) and although the merger doesn’t guarantee they’ll have it
      after, they are certain to never have it if the merger doesn’t go
      through.

      How do you figure?

      T-Mobile purchased nationwide 600 MHz spectrum and promised to cover as much as the U.S. as possible in order to compete with Verizon.

      Where is this small town?

      • Jose Mendoza

        They’re starting to deploy 600mhz in my smaller town. The problem is there is already many contradicting statements being pushed because some people are shills lol
        The thing is people still once again will bs anything just to get it approved. But take this into account, the Alltel and Verizon merger wasn’t that different. And look at what Verizon and AT&T do with their past mergers. Mergers should only be allowed with smaller corporations in the tele industry, not two big ones

    • Eric A

      What makes you think rural Americans will get fast mobile broadband with 3 mobile carriers when the didn’t even get slow mobile broadband with the existing 4 carriers?

      • StevenM

        They don’t have it now so there’s nothing to lose at this point. An undeserved area with 10k residents is plenty to justify the investment.

  • Francisco Peña

    Just pass it. Sprint can’t deploy in the areas that folks want to have it (rural) and never will on their own.
    TMo would be able alone, but will take much longer..

    Just pass it, have a drink, and move on.

  • Dharharr

    Good, approve it and let’s move on already!

  • Jay Holm

    These states need to bud out!!! This is for the DOJ & FCC to sort out, not individual states!

  • SirStephenH

    Industry shill says what?

  • Jay Holm

    This particular matter is something specifically for the DOJ & FCC to deal with. I’m all about states rights, I’m proud to live in Texas, our current Governor sued to previous administration 29 times when he was the state attorney general. But two companies merging, that isn’t a state issue.

  • riverhorse

    I hope they get so fed up they exercise their full right to secede.