Mississippi was one of the first states involved in the lawsuit from a group of state attorney generals who want to block T-Mobile and Sprint’s merger, but today, Mississippi has flipped sides.
Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood has now come out in support of the T-Mobile-Sprint merger. He announced today that he’s struck an agreement with T-Mobile that will bring benefits specifically for the state of Mississippi. Hood says that before the new agreement, the merger would’ve benefitted just two percent of Mississippians with future 5G service.
As part of its new agreement with Mississippi, T-Mobile has made the following commitments:
- Within three years of the merger closing, T-Mobile will deploy a 5G network with at least 62 percent of Mississippi’s general and rural populations having access to download speeds of 100Mbps or higher
- Within six years of the merger closing, T-Mo’s 5G network will cover at least 92 percent of Mississippi’s general population and 88 percent of the state’s rural population
- The commitments include 5G service in rural areas including, but not limited to Amite, Carroll, Choctaw, Covington, Franklin, Greene, Issaquena, Kemper, Lawrence, Marion, Perry, Smith, Tippah, and Walthall counties
- T-Mobile also made limited price commitments and vowed to decrease prices as supply increased, particularly as Dish enters the mobile market
Hood also says that in his discussions with T-Mobile, he confirmed that there will be no retail job losses and that new stores will be opened in rural areas.
“The world around us is almost fully digital, but Mississippi is lagging behind with internet deserts across the state.” said AG Hood. “My agreement with T-Mobile will help fill this gap, and I appreciate their commitments made specifically to Mississippi counties that lacked service. Access to the internet results in better access to education, jobs, and health care.”
With Mississippi switching sides, the lawsuit against T-Mobile and Sprint’s merger has 17 state AGs who argue that the deal will lessen competiton, raise prices, and harm jobs. The trial in that lawsuit is set to begin on December 9. Meanwhile, several other states have voiced their support for the deal, including Florida, Kansas, Nebraska, Louisiana, and Ohio, and now Mississippi is part of that group, too.