As we wrote yesterday, telecom giant AT&T is planning to pay $39 billion to acquire competing mobile carrier T-Mobile USA. And while the Death Star stands to benefit from the inherited 30 million subscribers and expanded network it will inherit, is there anything to be gained by the cellphone-using public?
Our benevolent benefactors at Consumers Union have already begun thinking about the ramifications of the AT&T/T-Mobile combo platter and they aren’t exactly jumping up and down with joy.
“AT&T is already a giant in the wireless marketplace, where customers routinely complain about hidden charges and other anti-consumer practices,” said Parul P. Desai, policy counsel for Consumers Union. “From a consumer’s perspective, it’s difficult to come up with any justification or benefits from letting AT&T swallow up one of its few major competitors… We plan to work very closely with regulators and lawmakers to carefully scrutinize this deal and what it would mean to people’s pocketbooks.”
Do you see any possible way the consumer will benefit from having fewer wireless carriers to choose from?