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Groups Want Local Hearings Regarding AT&T/T-Mobile

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Jun 29, 2011, 12:16 PM   by Eric M. Zeman

A number of public interest groups have requested that the Federal Communications Commission hold a number of public hearings so that Americans might have a better forum to voice their opinons on AT&T's proposed acquisition of T-Mobile. The group wrote, "As a matter of great public concern, the AT&T/T-Mobile merger proposal deserves the Commission's highest level of scrutiny and consideration." They would like the FCC to schedule hearings before September so that the implications of the merger can be exposed in a more public light. The groups contend that, "If approved, the merger would have serious repercussions around the country. As the undersigned have all argued, were just two wireless carriers to control nearly 80% of the market, prices would rise, jobs would be lost, and innovation would suffer." Those signing the letter include Public Knowledge, Consumers Union, Free Press, Future of Music Coalition, Media Access Project, National Hispanic Media Coalition, and the Open Technology Initiative, New America Foundation. The FCC and Justice Department are currently reviewing the merger, which is expected to close during the first quarter of 2012.

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Jun 29, 2011, 1:24 PM

Much ado about nothing.

I still amazes me how much noise is being made about this purchase. The original merger rumors for T-Mobile were with Sprint. I seriously doubt that Mr. Hess would be crowing so much if T-Mobile had accepted their offer instead of AT&T's. He has begun protesting so loudly and aroused so many other groups to gripe about this impending purchase that it is beginning to sound like sour grapes. There wasn't much, if any, protesting when Sprint bought Nextel. For that matter the rumors of the possible purchase of ClearWire hasn't brought the villagers out with torches and pitchforks. Where were all these protesters when Verizon bought out AlTel?

Yes, I do work for an agent of ATT, so some of my views are slanted in that direction. It is unfortu...
you so dumb!
the reason people would not be so concerned if it was Sprint and Tmobile merging is that two small players merging does not pose a threat to competition. ATT swallowing Tmobile is like eliminating Tmobile completely. ATT does not need T...
You think?

Jun 29, 2011, 3:46 PM

Expressing concerns and getting concessions

I am very concerned about AT&T being the only GSM carrier and stifling innovation and access. They will wield huge power of device manufacturers and will determine what is offered and how it is offered. Their iPhone plans and iPad plans definitely give preferential treatment over other manufacturers. Their decision to not unlock certain devices and cripple features should be curtailed. Maybe the merger is inevitable but what the concessions will be can help.
What phone outside of the iPhone has AT&T refused to unlock after 90 days of service? Waiting? Now, how many phones with either Sprint or VZW branding that can be used on each others system? (and not talking about roaming) Waiting? Because unless ...

Jun 29, 2011, 1:10 PM

Local Hearings

Get a clue, folks. This is a done deal. AT&T wants it, T-Mobile wants it, and they couldn't care less what the customers want. The FCC will go along with whatever the big companies want, not what Joe Customer wants. The local hearings will come after the papers have been signed so the public can vent, that's all.
it' also these same bunch of idiots that dont want cells towers in their backyard BUT do complain about bad coverage!

Jun 29, 2011, 6:34 PM

Decided to stick it out with TMO, think AT&T may be OK but hedging too.

I did cancel my TMO service when I first heard about this merger. I do HATE TMOs non-metro area data speeds (HORRIFIC EDGE or GPRS or just nothing). After thinking about it more though & reading how fair AT&T was with Alltel customers I said, heck with it, I'll restart. Seems they will grandfather us? I personally have 2 lines with 1000 Minutes & MyFaves, Unlimited Messaging (both) & Unlimited T-Zones (both, web service for non-smartphones) for $72 a month with a AAA discount of 14% paying the taxes. If AT&T does takeover & keep my deal the same, I just gain a larger coverage network & pay them. I did decide though to also pick up two $25/month Unlimited Web/Text/300 mins Virgin Mobile Androids on Sprints network & have been very happy wi...
Of course if they oust me from my plan forcing me onto some current AT&T deal, I will likely leave. There is supposed to be a "grace period" where we will be able to get out of our contracts with AT&T if we don't like their terms & they won't grandfa...

Jun 29, 2011, 2:34 PM

Just pondering

I'm just trying to understand why people think that competition from other carriers will be halted. Smaller companies like Cricket and Metro PCS, just to name a couple out of many small carriers in the US, would benefit from the merger, too. Yes, they will have to step their game up but, they have a better chance at grabbing new customers form ATT/TMO, when and if the merger happens. It's obvious that some of the smaller companies will probably end up merging themselves, to step into the gap that TMO will leave as a GSM carrier in this country. To be honest, I think that's the main reason so many people are concerned, outside of the idea that ATT may not be using the current spectrum they have. Maybe I missed it but, I never heard this being...
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