Judge Allows T-Mobile, Sprint to Merge Amid Antitrust Concerns
New York – The third and fourth largest wireless companies will soon be merging to rival the top two, Verizon and AT&T after a federal judge cleared a major roadblock for the $26.5 billion deal.
T-Mobile and Sprint’s merge will lead to lower phone bills, according to company spokesmen, or not, if the dozen state attorneys general who sued over antitrust concerns are right.
Judge Victor Marrero said in approving the deal that T-Mobile has a track record in promoting competition. For example, it was the first major company to end two-year service contracts and restore unlimited data plans.
In wooing the government to OK the deal, T-Mobile said it would lead to next generation, higher speed internet. It also promised not to raise rates for at least three years.
The merge still has another few obstacles but the companies expect to close by April 1. But several state attorneys general have sued to block the deal, saying that fewer phone companies would wind up raising costs.
New York Attorney General Letitia James said her office was considering an appeal. She said yesterday’s ruling “marks a loss for every American who relies on their cell phone.”