Oregon is the latest state to join lawsuit to block the T-Mobile, Sprint merger

ellen-rosenblum-oregon-attorney-general

Another state attorney general has joined the lawsuit to block the T-Mobile and Sprint merger.

Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum is the 16th attorney general to join the lawsuit. “It’s important that Oregon join other states in opposing the Sprint-T-Mobile merger,” said Rosenblum. “If left unchallenged, the current plan will result in reduced access to affordable wireless service in Oregon — and higher prices. Neither is acceptable.”

The lawsuit also includes attorneys general from California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nevada, New York, Texas, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Washington D.C.

“Oregon’s addition to our lawsuit keeps our momentum going, and ensures that there isn’t a single region of this country that doesn’t oppose this anticompetitive megamerger,” said New York Attorney General Letitia James.

The lawsuit argues that the T-Mobile-Sprint merger will “substantially” lessen competition and that prices for wireless services are “likely to be higher than they otherwise would be.” The states are also concerned that the quality and quantity of wireless services are “likely to be less than they otherwise would” and that there will be a “substantial loss” of retail jobs.

The trial is currently set to begin on December 9 after a judge recently delayed it from its previous October 7 start date. This is because the state AGs said that they needed more time to investigate the merger following the deal between that T-Mobile, Sprint, and Dish Network.

The T-Mobile-Sprint merger recently got approval from the U.S. Department of Justice following a deal that’ll see Dish purchase Sprint’s prepaid businesses as well as 800MHz spectrum from Sprint. Dish will also get at least 20,000 cell sites and hundreds of retail locations, and it’ll have access to the T-Mobile network for seven years as part of the deal while it builds out its own wireless network.

Source: Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum

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  • MisterListerSir

    I’m so incredibly disappointed my state (MN) is involved in this.

    At worst, we started with 4 carriers and end with 4. At best we get a new entrant (disruptor) in one market (Dish in cellular) and one in another (T-Mobile in Home Internet). Not to mention the welcome availability of the spectrum Dish has been stockpiling and no-one’s been able to use.

    That suit could stop actually Dish from utilizing that spectrum. Dish would lose it (they are cutting it close as it is to the use-it-or-lose-it deadline). Maybe these states just want VZW to grab it all up when Dish loses it? Ugh…don’t even want to think about that.

    • Chris Hollingsworth

      These AG’s just want a payday. Either from VZ or TMO. :( Sick of the BS…

      • Fabian Cortez

        These AG’s just want a payday. Either from VZ or TMO. :( Sick of the BS…

        There is zero evidence to support this conspiracy theory.

        The reality of the situation is that jobs will be eliminated in each of the sixteen (16) states (15 + D.C.) should this merger be allowed to proceed.

        • marque2

          Thanks for your insight Chairman Mao.

        • Chris Hollingsworth

          Zero evidence that they will lose jobs and increase prices also. When Sprint tanks, Verizon will snatch up the leftovers after all CDMA is in the family for VZ. Even though I hate VZ, ATT donates a lot more for favors. But that would be illegal and no proof lol.
          SOOOOO much obvious to gain by stalling the merger not to mention keep their foot on those bottom two. As for the AG’s they aren’t jumping to take on more work for free.
          If Sprint tanks how many jobs will be lost. If they are rescued by a merger, yes they will lose jobs, but I’d be it would be less by far. They already made a boat load of concessions to include no price increase for something like 2 or 5yrs I forget. What we need is more competition for the top two wireless monopolies. Sprint/Tmo would IMO reduce prices and force AT/VZ to actually stop robbing their customers.

        • Albert Orange

          I agree with you except for the part about VZW buying up Sprint assets because of CDMA. Verizon is shutting down CDMA at the end of the year…

        • MisterListerSir

          You speak of lack of evidence made for a claim and then make one just as wild, if not more; with no evidence.

          No evidence they are seeking a payday? Have you ever even glanced at politics? Even once?

        • Ummon

          He’s obviously a bureaucrat.

        • MisterListerSir

          People who just automatically puke “mergers are bad!” and label any rationale as to why it may be good for us as a “conspiracy theory” are really not worth arguing with. They’ve already proven they have no interest in a rational discussion.

        • Yonatan Ben Magen

          Good to see you got the shareholder’s talking points memo as well.

          One could say the same thing about your broad hypothesis about people who think mergers are bad – I guess it depends in which side of the equation your on. John Love and the $66.5M compensation is probably not bad in John’s eyes, if proces go up for customers or plans are not grandfathered or new plans offer less and cost more or 10K lose jobs and benefits (some maybe happy or mad) so hard to say that this was a good outcome for the merger.
          If 5G plans have data overages or caps after merger, that would make Tmo just another crappy overpriced mobile carrier

        • MisterListerSir

          Fantastic. You nailed the “imply he’s a shill” right off the bat. Excellent trolling 101.

          It’s hilarious that after your second sentence literally everything is “if”…and then you end the second to last with “hard to say this was” …as though it already happened.

          Looks like I was right. You’ve proven you have no interest in being rational.

        • Harlimus

          the fact of the matter that dems are blocking it should raise an eyebrow. what good has the dnc done for america in the last 20 years? i wont even talk about their entire history of damage to the country, just what have they done in 20 years?

        • KingofPing

          jobs will be eliminated

          I love this “woe is us” tactic. It’s hilarious.

          In the last 12 months, leading up to June 2019, 66.9 million people separated from their jobs. In that same period, 69.4 million were hired. Separation includes layoffs, dismissals, terminations, quitting, etc.

          The (simple) math here shows us a gap of 2.5 million more hires than separations.

          I’ve seen people throwing around numbers as high as 10K for “lost jobs” due to this merger. Even if that “meant to scare you all” number were even close to reality, it’s a drop in the water as to what our current job-market can take in.

          Lost jobs is not an issue unless you are pandering to a solely emotional argument. Yeah, losing a job sucks; but the numbers show, even worst-case, it would have little effect on the health of our job market.

    • Fabian Cortez

      I’m so incredibly disappointed my state (MN) is involved in this.

      Why? The AGs are doing their job: protecting consumers.

      At worst, we started with 4 carriers and end with 4. At best we get a new entrant (disruptor) in one market (Dish in cellular) and one in another (T-Mobile in Home Internet). Not to mention the welcome availability of the spectrum Dish has been stockpiling and no-one’s been able to use.

      Dish already has promised to provide an IoT network. They knew very well the conditions of the spectrum licenses their purchased. If they don’t use it in time, they get fined and/or forfeit it back to the FCC. T-Mobile has already committed to disrupting the home internet market without Sprint.

      That suit could stop actually Dish from utilizing that spectrum. Dish would lose it (they are cutting it close as it is to the use-it-or-lose-it deadline). Maybe these states just want VZW to grab it all up when Dish loses it? Ugh…don’t even want to think about that.

      The only thing stopping Dish from using the spectrum that Dish purchased is Dish.

      Every other party that has purchased spectrum licenses has abided by the rules. Why does Dish get a pass?

      • MisterListerSir

        How does this protect customers? What harm comes from going from 4 to 4 while adding a player that was not previously involved?

        IoT is not what they are now bound to by the agreement. They are now bound to becoming a carrier. They faced forfeiture, not billion dollar fines and possible jail time. This is a bit more incentive than they previously had; and there were many that believed they were either going to let it go or seek an extension rather than use it. (Hell, there are still some that believe this is just their version of an extension and they still don’t plan on using it)

      • (J²)

        This doesn’t protect consumers. There’s no way to regulate pricing in the wireless industry. Without T-Mobile’s disruptive force, the major 4 carriers managed to reduce offerings, raise prices and lower the standards for customer service. This just happened 5 – 10 years ago.

        It doesn’t matter how many carriers we have if none are actually in competition with each other. Verizon and AT&T are not competing. There’s no competition, because these two carriers can count on their business units. Unfortunately, unless there is a larger rival this problem remains unchanged.

        My point is, prices will rise, regardless let’s just ensure we actually get something out of this.

        There not as much outcry when AT&T tried to buy T-Mobile. This is insane…

        • Dharharr

          It’s funny I never see Fabian ever comment against this logic because he knows it’s true and the merged T-mobile/Sprint will actually BRING competition, not destroy it. You’re exactly right J and regardless if it’s considered a conspiracy or not, companies are known to economically “rent” politicians to get their way. Verizon and ATT don’t want competition because they’re comfortable with making their billions without it. A merged T-mobile/Sprint will force Verizon and ATT to innovate and compete…. Thus leading to further growth, meaning MORE jobs and MORE competition.

        • Harlimus

          he’s a dnc hired russian bot.

        • Yonatan Ben Magen

          Did’nt realize robots were so materialistic and cared about pay.

      • Harlimus

        if they were protecting consumers, they would have allowed this merger to go through. in fact, they would work to break up att and verizon instead. instead no, here you are russian bot, trying to influence america to vote left.

  • disqus_7XunpanFgK

    These AG’s are using hyperbole and strawman arguments to try and make their case. They have no concrete data to support their points. What we do know is that Sprint is circling the drain and would likely go bankrupt and be completely out of the wireless industry in less than 5 years, letting ATT and Verizon pay a premium to scoop up the spectrum. Without the merger, we will DEF lose jobs (all Sprint jobs), Verizon and ATT would become stronger with additional spectrum and T-Mobile would continue a very slow crawl towards parity with the 2 goliaths. 5G would cost more per person, as history has shown, when Verizon and ATT have no one to compete against, they raise prices. T-Mobile has guaranteed no pricing raises for a min of 3 years.

    • Fabian Cortez

      These AG’s are using hyperbole and strawman arguments to try and make their case. They have no concrete data to support their points.

      That’s right, because mergers always result in more jobs, lower prices, and innovation.

      /s

      What we do know is that Sprint is circling the drain and would likely go bankrupt and be completely out of the wireless industry in less than 5 years, letting ATT and Verizon pay a premium to scoop up the spectrum.

      That is Sprint and SoftBank’s problem. The FCC also has a spectrum screen; the spectrum does not belong to the carriers.

      Without the merger, we will DEF lose jobs (all Sprint jobs), Verizon and ATT would become stronger with additional spectrum

      This is untrue. Sprint will find another suitor who sees value in them. Dish comes to mind.

      and T-Mobile would continue a very slow crawl towards parity with the 2 goliaths. 5G would cost more per person, as history has shown, when Verizon and ATT have no one to compete against, they raise prices.

      Small crawl or not. T-Mobile, sans Sprint, has effectively changed the entire industry. They don’t need Sprint for 5G. Evidenced by their 600 MHz purchase, their recent mmWave spectrum purchase, and interest in the upcoming C band auction.

      T-Mobile has the money and has demonstrated interest in spending said money.

      T-Mobile has guaranteed no pricing raises for a min of 3 years.

      Good. And what happens after three (3) years? And why three (3) years? Why not five (5) years?

      • marque2

        There are several cases where merges led to more output and innovation. Disney and Pixar is an example. With Disney funds Pixar was able to double production. Buying Marvel also increased their output and innovation as well.

        • Acdc1a

          The Metro and T-Mobile merger also created jobs as opposed to eliminating them.

        • marque2

          Very good point. Fabian is probably thinking about those leveraged buyouts in the 1980s where no additional synergies were produced. Or he isn’t thinking.

        • Dharharr

          Fabian only ever comments on these merger updates, hardly ever anything else. To me, he’s a paid shill just like these AGs trying to block the merger. They will fail.

        • Yonatan Ben Magen

          Hmm if I want to take the Family to Disney it’s at least $100/PP per day.

          So Pixar is funded with Park fees as well seems like park fees have double as well as Pixar’s production.

      • Harlimus

        it’s hilarious that you dont think att and verizon wont pick up any spectrum from the sprint carcass. if that happens, i will start a class action against every ag and politician that tried blocked this merger.

      • Yonatan Ben Magen

        AT&T swore to the FCC not to raise prices for how long if they merged.

        That lasted what 5 minutes post merger, I guess it might have been a month.

        I actually dread how long the “uncarrier” can last post merger.

        I’m a huge fan of T-mo even with Netflix price increase (but will be an issue as content gets worse and they loose Disney, and Network shoes, and cancel orginal shows I liked (Travellers for example). Also the Military discounts and all cheap Samsung Flagships thru Costco promos.

        The flat monthly fee that includes the taxes – unlimted data my teenagers regularly use 50Gb+ a month and it’s been a while since I had to pay for using more than 1TB of data with Comcast ( still flirt with 1 TB every few months).

        Coverage, where I live is great, I checked open signL downtown on Monday night over 100 Mbps at my house in the burbs consistently get 60 Mbps or better.

        If I travel out in the boonies, I can swap an Xfinity Sim in my unlocked T-mobile Note 9 businessphone, then I will have phone signal anywhere Verizon/T-Mobile(+roaming) does. Just for about $2 a month in taxes as long as I don’t use data with Xfinity.

        So I dread the Sprint Tmo merger as I feared it will as start to disapperd.

  • Kevin

    Sprint has so much potential with their spectrum portfolio. If Softbank had given it more funding to expand the network, then they would not be in this situation. It is still not too late for Sprint, they can be number one in 5g with their large chunk of 2.5 ghz spectrum if they are better funded.

    • marque2

      Sprint couldn’t pull it off. Verizon markets to business. AT&T bundles with cable and TMobile went for the hip cool factor. Hip cool can’t really be forced – they are too small and unreliable to attract business and they don’t have a cable network to sponge off. So how would they do it?

      • Kevin

        Build the best coverage and fast network and customers will come. Any other ideas you all can think of for Sprint to become number one?

        • gramps28

          When this merger fails , merging with Verizon is the only thing I can think of for it to become #1. :)

        • marque2

          I think they could team up with Comcast – that way they could offer service bundles and Comcast has spectrum. But that would just make them viable again, not #1

        • Yonatan Ben Magen

          From the infastucture side a wet dream from the CS side a nightmare mixed with a double does of a bad acid trip with frequent flashbacks.

          It would turn the uncarrier into America most hated carrier- unless T-mobie was put in charge of Customer service and retention and Comcast just brought cash and tech to the table.

        • marque2

          No not TMobile. We were talking about how sprint could survive without the tmobile merger. My answer was Sprint would have to merge with someone or get really buddy buddy with a large cable company that is not Verizon or AT&T.

        • marque2

          Just a point I thought of. You are correct if you build the best coverage and a fast network and have reasonable customer service, “They will come”. If I had 100 billion in the bank and used it to
          cover the USA 99% with 250mb/s LTE for $10 a month, I would eventually get every customer. Unfortunately resources are limited, and I would go bankrupt eventually with such a scheme. Sprint didn’t have the 20 billion or so sitting around to increase their coverage and speed. That coupled with a few mistakes (They are still suffering from WiMax) and there is just no way that Sprint has the resources to build out a network you would like. And there is just so little you can charge a customer before your network is unprofitable. So that is why they need Tmobile. Tmobile figured out how to attract customers, and has some bucks. Sprint has some spectrum which is useful, but they can’t afford to develop.

    • mrmiddl

      i would never ever go to Sprint , id rather go to ATT and have some big muscle bound dude turn me upside down and shake all my money out of my pockets before i go to Sprint. Their customer service is the worst and their network sucks.

      • Kevin

        Customer service varies. Employees quit or fired, and new employees come. Nothing is set in stone. The reason the network is not on par is because Sprint doesn’t have enough funding to build the world class network customers deserve.

  • vrm

    The state of lawlessness (Antifa beating up people on the street with police encouraging them, Sanctuary for illegals who rape, kill & traffic humans) want to enforce imaginary laws.

    • Ruben Pantoja

      Ah yes, illegals that rape; let’s ignore the Texas shooter a US citizen who wanted to kill hispanics. We love selective cherry-picking.

      • Harlimus

        who was also anti trump, like the dnc.

        • mrmiddl

          so you’re saying racists can only be democrats? very intersting stupidity you have there

  • Chanki Lee

    I dont understand what give right to the state when each company try to merge? I mean if i buy a business do i have to get a approval from government?

    • slybacon

      I agree. It’s stupid.

  • Mike McDonald

    Oregon will not be the last to join the suit. I’m certain Ms Jones in NY has already done her homework in who to approach in the Southern District. It’s her backyard anyway. A TRO, in spite of Justice and FCC clearances, is likely requiring then an extensive appellate process.

    So, if there is likelihood of a TRO preventing a merger closing, what then? How hard does T-Mo fight? The is no breakup fee if T-Mo walks away. Remember, it’s T-Mo in Germany that ultimately calls the final shots. Is there an exit strategy in case the courts side w/ the States?

    Is T-Mo existentially threatened if they do not merge? No, it seems they could stand alone but there still is a great need for usable spectrum to service increasing customer load. It’s the midband that is really needed. It’s either Sprint or Dish that has this. Could a long term roaming agreement be made in exchange for building out that spectrum?

    • Harlimus

      it’s not tmobile. it’s sprint that’s the issue. sprint is doa without this merger. if this merger is blocked, att and verizon will be able to pick up many of the pieces and the duopoly will grow. it’s time america stopped the evil democrats in power and vote all red from here until eternity.

      • Yonatan Ben Magen

        It’s not a blue, or green or even a red issue, the problem is at the end of the day they are all politican’s, 95%+ who started out as a Lairyers.

        Undoubtedly a disproportionate number of clincal sociopaths, with a few handfuls of psychopaths in the mix.

        The lure and lust for power/money corrupts the ones that started out decent and honest.

    • Yonatan Ben Magen

      I’m usually on the opposite side of most of the direction and choices that Oregon Gov’t seems to cramming down the citizens throats.

      But Mergers rarely benefit the customers or employees, in the end it’s the C-suite Execs and shareholder’s.

      But as a customer and a shareholder of companies that have recently had mergers – the lost benefits or services are not always trade with good parity. I.e. Alaska/Virgin Air, SPG/Marriott, UA/Continental Air, AT&T/Dish all of these recent mergers have screwed employees and customers.

      That said T-Mo is quite healthy and it’s debt service vs revenue/profit is great. Sprint’s debt is a millstone around it’s neck. Sprint’s primary customer base makes me think more of T-mo and pre-paid 10-15 years ago, or even T-MO boost/PC’s metro (not even sure of the name of the sub-prime cell offerings).

  • Jason Wheaton

    The merger needs to be stopped. I’ve worked for T-Mobile for 8 years and they have started treating staff like trash. They pretend to be one thing publicly but at least here in Ohio they have started treating employees like we don’t matter. They have over staffed stores. Dramatically cut commission and now they even threaten that sales reps are replaceable if they have a bad month. They told us recently that if the merger is approved the network will get worse before it gets better and integration will be a painfully slow and tedious process. They also cut commission if your store has negative customer feedback surveys. So for example I work really hard to make sure all my customers are happy and I avg 95 to 100 percent on all my customer surveys. But now if some of my co workers in the store have bad customer feedback scores my commission is penalized. Last month my commission dropped $600 overnight because two employees in my store got back to back bad surveys from customers. Our district manager said yesterday that “we don’t want their customers as much as we want their network, a good portion of their low end customer base has bad credit and has stiffed T-Mobile in the past so sprint was their only option. And now we’re gonna have to take all that trash back because we bought it, lol”. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. They also plan to get rid of a good portion of the Sprint sales reps because they believe they are unethical and they don’t want those “types” of people working for T-Mobile. They are literally acting like they became Verizon overnight. The reality is and I hate to say this but As an employee who deals with coverage checks for potential customers daily, there are places all over Ohio with Zero coverage and no plans or a chance in hell of those areas ever getting coverage. They have known about the gaps in coverage for years and they don’t care. Meanwhile Verizon and at&t both have service in the areas that we have nothing. The company has also become more and more unethical! Upper leadership is basically forcing us to slam customers with free tablets and connected car services to inflate new customer growth. If you aren’t aggressively trying force customer to add things on they will threaten you job, even if you know it’s not the right thing for the customer. To be clear I work for T-Mobile corporate, not a third party. It’s even worse for the third party retailers. I’m already looking for a new job after 8 years of loyalty because ethics matters to me and they always will. This MERGER or HOstile takeover is bad news for everyone and the nation as a whole should be concerned. So there’s the truth about what’s going on behind the curtain.

    • marque2

      Your screed is a bit incoherent. I got to say much of it is your unhappiness in sales. Well, I got to tell you that is commissioned sales. I used to work at a retail store with commissions when I was younger, and there times, like February when there were no sales going on whatsoever, we got the same talks, folks got laid off. I lasted about 8 months and was laid off myself. That is how it works. If you are cranky, yeah they should fire you.

      And then you go on about how Tmobile was stiffed by customers so they went to Sprint. You are seriously complaining that Tmobile is bad because they don’t accept non-paying customers?

      Finally, Tmobile doesn’t have coverage and they know it – well how does not getting Sprint help that situation? I know of several spots where Sprint towers would greatly help Tmobile coverage once integrated. So because the coverage is bad they should keep it bad by not getting more spectrum?

      And coverage will be worse when Sprint integrates. Yeah I am sure there will be some glitches when Sprint is merged, but I went through the Metro PCS merge and didn’t notice many issues. In two years no-one will know the distance except for the extra coverage.

    • Ummon

      Thanks, Im now dumber for having read this.

    • Kevin

      If this merger happens, no more “un-carrier” for everyone.