Sprint-T-Mobile Deal Will Reduce Wireless Competition, Likely Increase Prices and Curtail Innovation

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Today, Sprint Corporation and T-Mobile U.S. Inc. announced plans to merge to form a massive wireless carrier. The combination would reduce the number of national wireless carriers from four to three. Just as the Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission concluded when the government rejected AT&T’s 2011 attempt to acquire T-Mobile, such a drastic reduction in competition is likely to harm competition and increase costs for consumers.

The following can be attributed to Phillip Berenbroick, Senior Policy Counsel at Public Knowledge:

“Sprint and T-Mobile will be hard pressed to demonstrate how their combination would benefit the public interest. This task proves increasingly difficult when a merger drastically reduces competition in the wireless marketplace, as this combination certainly will.

“If approved, this deal would especially hurt consumers seeking lower-cost wireless plans, as the combined company’s plans would likely increase while competitors AT&T and Verizon would have even less incentive to lower prices. Unless the merging parties can demonstrate clear competitive benefits we have yet to see, we will urge the Department of Justice and the FCC to reject this deal.”

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