AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

Summary: AT&T is reportedly trying to sell off subscribers and spectrum to smaller regional carriers to save its proposed bid for T-Mobile.

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TOPICS: Mobility, AT&T
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Now that AT&T has even more enemies on its list after seven state attorney generals from some of the nation's most populated areas banded together against its desired merger with T-Mobile, AT&T is moving on to the last-ditch effort portion of the program.

Bloomberg reports that AT&T is trying to sell off spectrum and subscribers to some smaller mobile providers, most notably MetroPCS and Leap Wireless:

AT&T is seeking ways to salvage its agreement to buy T- Mobile USA from Bonn-based Deutsche Telekom AG (DTE) after the Justice Department sued on Aug. 31 to stop the deal. The talks with competitors are preliminary and may not lead to a deal, and the Justice Department may also deem the remedies insufficient, the people said.

Even more surprisingly, AT&T possibly approached Dish Network and even Sprint, who has been the most outspoken opponent to the proposed $39 billion merger since it was first announced in March. Thus, it would be hard to see Sprint trying to help out AT&T in any sort of way at this point.

It looks like the idea is that AT&T wants to appear like it has less coverage and lacks the resources to expand to justify the need for acquiring T-Mobile and its nationwide network -- the fourth largest in the country -- which is what AT&T has been arguing all along.

However, if it is trying to get rid of spectrum that it supposedly needs as well as customers (who might not be happy about being ditched to another carrier) then it doesn't make AT&T look very good to the Federal Communications Commission, which is already casting doubts about the deal after the Department of Justice filed suit recently over potential antitrust law violations.

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Topics: Mobility, AT&T

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  • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

    They need to let it go, that is never going to get through.
    slickjim
    • NO to AT&T-Mobile!

      @Peter Perry Here, T-Mobile is considered a good alternative and AT&T is pretty much universally hated. Meanwhile I'll stay with Verizon.
      Papa_Bill
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        [i]Meanwhile I'll stay with Verizon.[/i]

        @becabill they suck, too. Only they're not in the spotlight at the moment.

        But they will. They'll screw up like AT&T did.
        ScorpioBlue
  • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

    pretty sad too. Seperately, they both suck in their own ways. Together, they could cover up their weaknesses.
    tiderulz
    • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

      @tiderulz That's not how it usually works. I used to have Bell Atlantic for wireline phone service and they merged with NYNEX which was known for bad customer service. The merged company (Verizon) immediately put the NYNEX people in charge of customer service for everyone and service took a nosedive for Bell Atlantic customers! Now we have the WORST of both worlds.

      This is the norm, not the exception. Mergers seem to bring out the worst in both companies.
      GR8BigCheese
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        I can't speak from a customer service perspective, but I can speak about the technology. The biggest complaint i've seen seems to be around AT&T's service/coverage. Obtaining more spectrum is the only near-term solution to resolve that. Since the government controls who has access to what spectrum, the TMO merger was another way of obtaining what was needed to improve wireless service.
        DKR0924
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        @DKR0924
        But that is why the merger was shot down. If they spent even half the money they want to spend buying t-mobile they can use the spectrum they already own. They don't need any more spectrum, they just need to build the towers and infrastructure to use it. Which would cost much less than buying t-mobile.
        mdeans@...
    • AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

      @tiderulz Actually, TMO doesn't really suck at all. They have great customer support, a huge selection of phones with exception of iphone (which isn't necessarily their fault they don't have it), good coverage (at least from Washington to Texas which is where I've driven with mine), close if not best rate plan prices. I don't think the buyout will be the "best of both worlds", I think ATT will take all that and destroy it by eventually imposing their expensive rates, terrible customer service, spotty intermittent signals (from what I hear from ATT users). As a very happy TMO customer of 11 years (back to the Voicestream days), this is not a deal I'm hoping goes through, even though somehow I think in the end it probably will, unfortunately.
      waterhzrd
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        @waterhzrd <br>Totally agree. I was on AT&T and their customer service was terrible. T-Mobile is the only GSM alternative to AT&T and I would not have any other choice if this merger goes through <br><img border="0" src="http://www.cnet.com/i/mb/emoticons/sad.gif" alt="sad">
        pingsatish
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        @waterhzrd I've used TMO since 2005 for my cell phone, and ATT for my laptop Internet connection since 2006. There are times when I can send an email but cannot make a phone call. I have never experienced the reverse. As one who travels all the lower 48 states I have quite a bit of experience in this regard. I was hoping ATT would acquire TMO so that I'd have expanded phone coverage. Count on the government to mess up a good thing.
        neverhome
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        @waterhzrd Here's the truth: T-Mobile *HAD* great customer service, but not any more. The days of those JD Power awards are out the window. I know because I *USED* to work as a T-Mobile customer service rep who was employed by the outsourcing company used by both T-Mobile and AT&T. However, both T-Mobile and AT&T have now decided that employing North American, English-speaking reps through third party companies whose were located in the boondocks (think northernmost Maine and the poorest deep South states) was still too expensive and it was better for the outsourcers to "grow the company's footprint offshore." This means that thousands of customer service reps in the US and Canada have recently found themselves out of work (330 in one center in Louisiana alone), while all the jobs have been re-outsourced to Tagalog-speaking workers in Makati City in the Philippines. So while I sit here and struggle to pay my AT&T bill out of my unemployment check, tonight I just had more even salt rubbed in the wound by having a problem with my phone and speaking to a rep who absolutely couldn't understand me or help me in any way. T-Mobile and AT&T deserve each other as far as I'm concerned; neither of them serve their customers with their pennywise-poundfoolish attitude.
        natalie@...
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        @waterhzrd
        actually, having them as my old company's phone, and travelling around, they did suck. Cant count how many times i would lose signal on a major highway, near an airport, in a building, shoot practically in the entire town of Sacramento. Not saying ATT is perfect either, but it a merge helps ATT combine the coverages, i would consider them. Otherwise i wont consider either company separately.
        tiderulz
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        [i]I'd MUCH rather T-Mobile be acquired by Verizon or Google, where's there's at least a chance the high-quality of customer service and bandwidth wouldn't be carved up into niblets to feed to AT&T's under-served subscribers...[/i]

        You must be joking. What Kool-Aid have you been sipping?
        ScorpioBlue
    • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

      @tiderulz
      There is nothing sad about it. I had ATT for years and they suck. They gouge you and cap your data use. T Mobile may have a crappy network but, it's good enough. And they give by far the best customer service. And my rates are very cheap. If ATT gets this done they will wait patiently for my contract to expire then, BAM they will smack us with a great big rate hike. Plus I don't know if you're old enough to remember the obscene long distance rates we had to pay before they got forced to break up the company. Because that's how AT&T rolls. They are the worst phone company in the world.
      j-mccurdy@...
  • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

    OH thank god. AT&T is a joke, leave T-mobile alone
    mlstephen
    • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

      @mlstephen Gah! This is the kind of insane thinking that will kill the mobile apps world. mlstephen, you need to understand that T-Mo is not a hostile takeover situation. T-Mo's parent company has declared they want out of the US market, and they are not going to invest in new technology like LTE. So "leaving them alone" results in T-Mo going nowhere but down. You can't force T-Mo to invest, you can't force T-Mo to upgrade. T-Mo is not interested in being a competitor anymore.

      As the song says "You can't make them love you, if they don't...so give up this fight"
      Morgan_Reed
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        @Morgan_Reed

        Actually, T-Mobile's parent company's chief creditor wants T-Mo out of the U.S. market. If T-mobile had the iPhone (which ain't for me) all of this would be moot. I'd MUCH rather T-Mobile be acquired by Verizon or Google, where's there's at least a chance the high-quality of customer service and bandwidth wouldn't be carved up into niblets to feed to AT&T's under-served subscribers...
        egads@...
      • AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        @Morgan_Reed If ATT gets TMO, it is hostile. I don't really care if DTE is adament about ditching TMO as long as it isn't ATT that gets it. We'd get to trade good pricing/great customer service/good 3g and HSPA coverage for crap service, crap coverage for way higher prices. Why would any TMO customer want to be forced into ATT?
        waterhzrd
      • RE: AT&T moves on to last-ditch efforts to save T-Mobile deal

        @Morgan_Reed I think if you read the article they want to sell off spectrum and subscribers to smaller providers. And if T mobile had not been in competition they would not be trying to upgrade. Tired of hearing Apps, Iphone and investing. Tmobile Made UMS work well within their network, Data speed and coverage is great in my area and other places. Samsung and HTC keep bringing out better phones. If it were not for Samsung, HTC,LG and Android Iphone users would still be on 3g 3.5" screen Single core wired to a computer, oh! wait they are I guess that is why Apple is suing. If a customer wants Apple they have a choice. If AT&T wants to build their infrastructure they can. People want choice and smart people will look at facts and not by swayed by Apple marketing.
        phil1234
      • It's going to be hostile.

        @Morgan_Reed
        The good folks at T-Mobile apparently don't want to share AT&T's horrible reputation for customer service and p***-poor coverage in areas they claim to serve.
        Additionally, AT&T's sole purpose for "merging" is to reduce and eventually eliminate competition, a practice from well-known history. Service, features and reliability will nose dive while prices skyrocket.

        I'm waiting to see if AT&T allows any competition to develop VDSL systems (ain't gonna happen). If they do, I'll be among the first to jump ship.
        Papa_Bill