∞ AT&T responds to Justice Department

Smartphone Boss:

“Without this merger, AT&T will continue to experience capacity constraints, millions of customers will be deprived of faster and higher quality service, and innovation and infrastructure will be stunted. If this transaction does not close due to Plaintiff’s lawsuit, wireless consumers will, as the FCC Chairman predicts, increasingly face higher prices and lower quality.”

  • Very disappointed if this does indeed does not happen.

    • Why? What will you actually gain if it does happen?

      • cellgeek

        Better cell reception would be the big one.  During the AT&T/Cingular merger, they were forced to divest quite a number of cell sites, which went to T-Mobile.  Reception in some areas, such as the SF Bay Area, have suffered for years as a result.  Adding new sites is not as simple as buying a patch of land, and building a tower.  There are zoning laws, and community groups who are afraid of cell towers, and will fight them (just try explaining the difference between ionizing and non-ionizing radiation to the average community activist).  In some areas of the country, it can take 3 to 5 years to get a new cell site approved.  Combining the spectrum and existing cell sites owned by T-Mobile and AT&T would be a major boost to service performance for users of both networks.  

  • Golly, I’m so happy that AT&T is out there advocating for consumers. Because mergers always provide more choice for basic service, and they almost never result in a net loss of jobs.That was sarcasm. In a previous decade when utilities were regulated, AT&T was split up for having become exactly the kind of monopolistic one-utility-to-rule-them-all monster that they’re now trying to recreate. Their arguments for the merger are deliberately deceptive. If it goes through, they’ll have even less incentive to compete on price, and jobs will disappear.

    • Hey Moeski, get your head out of your butt and realize this isn’t “a previous decade.” Predicting the future by looking backwards is the height of stupidity.

      No, this is a new decade with the new factor (which didn’t exist in your “previous decade”): the internet with its high demands for bandwidth, amplified by the advent of “smart devices.”

      The relatively finite radio spectrum will not accommodate a broad enough array of separate providers to satisfy your arbitrary requirements for “fairness” and “low prices through competition.”

      As our “beloved” Post Office is about to become extinct, there will be even more demand for this bandwidth.

      A relative few providers will have more of the spectrum they need in order to adequately supply this rapidly escalating demand, as well as to remain profitable enough to fund research to innovate new technology to continue to handle more of the demand.

      If these government bodies prove to be as stupid as you and block this merger, get ready for really interesting times when the public realizes they’ve been sold a bill of goods with all this rhetoric of yours and others, and start suffering from their lines of communication being blocked by inadequate internet service.

      • Thanks for the personal insults. Your “new factor” is merely another utility that’s undergoing growth and deserves to be treated as such.

        Yes, those providers will innovate as they always have. Minimally. Escalating demand won’t drive improvements, it’ll drive prices up. Carriers will continue to post record profits while their lobbyists whine to Congress about over-regulation and the need for more government subsidies.

        I look forward to hearing your complaints about whichever provider you’re using in two years, when you’ll somehow blame something other than consolidation for the fact that you’ll have no alternatives to switch to.

        Are you celebrating the end of the USPS, too?

        • The more you blabber on the more you reveal to the world how sadly deluded and jaded you are.

          Apple has somehow prospered in spite of you people. Perhaps AT&T can prevail as well. They are certainly involved in each other’s success.

          • “You people?” Your rudeness is awesome in its specificity.

            Apple’s success with iOS is largely in spite of the carriers’ restrictions upon what consumers are allowed access to. Apple has “somehow” prospered because it is concerned with the consumer experience, period. You can’t say the same thing about AT&T or any of its few remaining competitors. 

            This issue has nothing to do with Apple, and everything to do with placing your trust in the wrong places. We have no reason to cheer for the “prevalence” of AT&T over any other carrier, despite your obvious adoration for their PR about this issue. Unless you’re on AT&T’s board, in which case, you’re doing fine.

          • Peter Cohen

            Let’s lay off the personal invective, please.

  • Anonymous

    If AT&T came by to hand me a drink, I’d be sure to check my wallet before he walked out of view.

  • Anonymous

    If capacity constraints aren’t forcing innovation from AT&T then nothing will.