AT&T and T-Mobile merger factsheet

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) are reviewing the $39 billion dollar merger of AT&T and T-Mobile. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, AT&T spent $6.8 million in the first three months of 2011 to hire lobbyists and lawyers to support this merger. Without hesitation, New Media Rights can say the merger threatens innovation, consumer choice, lower prices, and the future of the internet for millions who rely on access through wireless devices.

The merged company will control 40% of the wireless market nationally. Together, AT&T and Verizon Wireless will hold nearly 80% of the nation-wide market would create a duopoly structure in the marketplace. This merger will only exacerbate current challenges in loss of jobs, lack of competition in markets, and an increase in phone and broadband access charges. 

California Facts

In addition to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) is reviewing this merger. Please plan to comment to the CPUC about opposing the merger. Dates for public hearings and workshops in your region can be found here

The merged company will control 55% of the mobile broadband market in California source

The merged company will control 47% of the wireless market source

Together, AT&T and Verizon Wireless will hold over 77% of the California wireless market source


National Facts

  • Increased rates nation-wide

AT&T President, James Cicconi has stated publicly that it will be changing the T-Mobile pricing plans if the merger is approved source

The deal would reduce the reasons for AT&T and T-Mobile to lower prices or offer better products into the market source

The average AT&T customer pays between $15 and $50 more per month than a T-Mobile customer for a comparable plan source

This could result in T-Mobile consumers potentially paying up to $600 more per year under an AT&T plan source

  • Increased gatekeeping power to control the way we access and use the internet and stifle innovations in wireless industry

AT&T blocked the use of competing applications like Google Voice and Skype that could offer additional communications choices to consumers. source

AT&T blocked access to sites such as 4chan in 2009 source

AT&T censored the broadcast of a Pearl Jam concert in 2007 because the lyrics to a song were critical of then-President Bush source

  • Merger will decrease job opportunities

AT&T had 20,000 layoffs between 2007 and 2009 source

  • AT&T wants to control your access to the internet

AT&T, along with Verizon Wireless have continually lobbied against Net Neutrality rules for wireless broadband source


Sources and Resources:

New Media Rights encourages state regulators in California to investigate the AT&T T-Mobile merger

New Media Rights Petition to Deny at FCC

New Media Rights CPUC Letter

Public Knowledge Factsheet (PK)

"AT&T, T-Mobile file merger application; Q&A with James Cicconi" by Cecelia Kang

"AT&T ramps up lobby for proposed T-Mobile merger" by Cecelia Kang

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