Feeds

AT&T poised to kick T-Mobile USA out of bed

Proposed merger on the rocks as firms give up on FCC for now

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

AT&T and Deutsche Telekom have given the first signal that they might give up on the marriage proposal for T-Mobile USA after heavy opposition from the US government.

The companies have withdrawn their application to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and will focus on handling the flak they face over the merger from the Department of Justice first.

The DoJ is suing the two firms on anticompetitive grounds to stop AT&T taking T-Mobile USA off Deutsche Telekom's hands. The break-up would cost AT&T billions in breakup fees and concessions, estimated from $4bn and upwards.

"This formal step today is being undertaken by both companies to consolidate their strength and to focus their continuing efforts on obtaining antitrust clearance for the transaction from the Department of Justice," Deutsche Telekom, parent to T-Mobile USA, said in a canned statement.

The withdrawal comes just a day after the FCC said it was going to take the rather unusual step of having an administrative hearing on the merger, an event that is exceedingly rare and usually leads to suitors giving up on consummation.

AT&T said in its own statement that the two firms were taking this step to "facilitate the consideration of all options at the FCC" as well as sorting things out with the DoJ, and they'd be going back to the FCC for approval "as soon as [is] practical".

However, despite this optimism, the US carrier is also setting aside a $4bn accounting charge in the fourth quarter "to reflect the potential break-up fees due Deutsche Telekom in the event the transaction does not receive regulatory approval".

Both telcos have insisted that marrying T-Mobile USA to AT&T is a great idea that won't restrict competition and will give loads of jobs to Americans.

However, the FCC has said that the merger would lead to "massive" layoffs, while the DoJ has said that the coupling would result in "tens of millions of consumers all across the US facing higher prices, fewer choices and lower quality products for mobile wireless services".

AT&T is the largest wireless carrier in America, with around 95.5 million subscribers, while T-Mobile USA is the fourth largest, carrying about 23 million customers. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Kaspersky backpedals on 'done nothing wrong, nothing to fear' blather
Founder (and internet passport fan) now says privacy is precious
TROLL SLAYER Google grabs $1.3 MEEELLION in patent counter-suit
Chocolate Factory hits back at firm for suing customers
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.