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AT&T responds to DOJ lawsuit, calls MetroPCS and Cricket a bigger threat than T-Mobile

Posted: , by Alan F.

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AT&T responds to DOJ lawsuit, calls MetroPCS and Cricket a bigger threat than T-Mobile
Filing a formal response to the DOJ lawsuit against its proposed purchase of T-Mobile, AT&T made some interesting comments. Claiming that the removal of T-Mobile from the competitive landscape would do no harm to consumers, the carrier writes that as a result, the DOJ has no reason to believe that a combined AT&T/T-Mobile would be able to raise prices, restrict output or slow innovation. Taking a dig at T-Mobile, AT&T says that the government cannot explain how T-Mobile-the only major carrier to have lost subscribers in a "robustly growing market"-gives AT&T a competitive challenge.

So who is AT&T afraid of in the current environment? The filing claims that MetroPCS, Cricket Wireless, Cellular South and U.S. Cellular are "innovative upstarts" that present more of a competitive threat than T-Mobile. AT&T tells the court that if it is not allowed to buy T-Mobile, wireless consumers will face higher prices and lower quality. Will AT&T actually be able to get the court and the DOJ to see things its way? Surely the "T-Mobile is not a threat" argument will face plenty of resistance from the government.

source: Phonescoop

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posted on 11 Sep 2011, 17:09 6

1. Galen20K (Posts: 517; Member since: 26 Dec 2008)


Att is full of it, as always and not like anybody is surprised.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 18:18 6

3. Lucas777 (Posts: 2137; Member since: 06 Jan 2011)


is full of it? verizon is the one who denied themselves the iPhone which att got rich on... att worked for the money and shud be able to buy tmobile.. but whether or not att rescues tmobile, its undoubtedly tanking...

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:40

11. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5954; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


How does VZW not getting the iPhone guarantee no loss of competition when one competitor gets absorbed into another? The DOJ and FCC have objected on the grounds that competition will suffer if AT&T is allowed to acquire T-Mobile, not that AT&T got fat off of VZW not getting the iPhone.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 20:22

16. Yeeee (Posts: 190; Member since: 02 Aug 2011)


they should be using this money to build out lte and expand 3g

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 20:32

17. Bacon_Hat (unregistered)


Verizon didn't want the iPhone since it would have ceded too much control to Apple. Verizon is another story where the no 1 guy doesn't take risk or innovate since its already on top. At&t is already showing these tendencies.

"AT&T Mobility’s CEO Ralph de la Vega said it will take AT&T between 2 and 3 years to bring its LTE network coverage up to a par with Verizon Wireless’ 4G offering." Hope you At&t people like to know while you pay similar prices to Verizon you will always be behind in technology.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 20:41 1

19. Whateverman (Posts: 3233; Member since: 17 May 2009)


What do you mean VZW "denied themselves the iPhone". VZW was never offered the original iPhone. Apple was strictly working on GSM phones at that time.

VZW told customers they didn't want it to save face, but trust me, the executives were all over it from the word go.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 21:28 1

21. Bacon_Hat (unregistered)


http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/2007-01-28-verizon-iphone_x.htm

Its a well know fact that Verizon was offered it first....

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:24 1

32. Whateverman (Posts: 3233; Member since: 17 May 2009)


Believe me, those were the rumors that were passed throughout VZW call centers as well.  But according the Verizon's CEO, Apple wasn't interested in making a CDMA phone.  I don't know why Jim Gerace said different, but here's a couple articles published about VZW and the OG iPhone.  

http://www.appleinsider.com/articles/11/01/14/verizon_was_never_in_the_running_for_original_iphone_says_ceo.html

http://www.phonearena.com/news/Verizon-CEO-says-that-the-carrier-never-had-a-shot-at-the-original-Apple-iPhone_id15983

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:00 2

27. ardent1 (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Apple approached Verizon before agreeing with Cingular. Verizon balked at Apple's terms, and as a result, there was no deal between Verizon and Apple. Cingular and its successor ATT locked up Apple. When Verizon saw Apple's success, they realized they made a mistake and underestimate the power of the iPhone. The iPhone's success was something very few people could have accurately forecasted.

The fact remains Verizon had a shot at the iPhone and blew it.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:19 2

30. Lucas777 (Posts: 2137; Member since: 06 Jan 2011)


verizon was very clearly offered the iPhone before att (cingular at the time)... i was stating that verizon was the one full of it while att saw promise and has gotten rich off of the iPhone.. i personally do not think att buying tmobile is any more anticompetitive than google buying motorola..

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 21:45

22. TKFox007 (Posts: 303; Member since: 02 Nov 2010)


Verizon never denied it, they never had a shot at the original iPhone because Apple wanted it to be GSM.

The "Verizon rejecting the iPhone" is the biggest publicized rumor that no one ever decided to correct.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:04

28. ardent1 (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


That's not what the previous CEO of Verizon stated in numerous business magazines. It was the previous CEO that approached Steve Jobs and asked why is Verizon in the "dog house" and that led to renewed discussions between Apple and Verizon.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:40

34. Whateverman (Posts: 3233; Member since: 17 May 2009)


I don't know if we'll ever know the full true, but there are conflicting story both from VZW and from the Apple side of things. Either way, nether company was negatively effected by the decision. Although VZW could have gotten millions more customers, they still managed to become the largest cellular carrier in the US. Apple sold MILLIONS and MILLIONS of iPhones. The only party that seemed negatively impacted was ATT. Their customer service ratings and reputation took a drastic nose dive and hasn't recovered since. Now that's kinda weird.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 02:04

43. ardent1 (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Check out this link:

http://seekingalpha.com/instablog/524791-the-business-insider/105917-verizon-s-ceo-opens-up-about-steve-jobs

Key highlights from the Fortune article that the author summarized:
"Fortune is the latest to report the iPhone is coming to Verizon next year. It reports this nugget at the top of a big profile of Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg.

While Seidenberg doesn't confirm (on the record) the iPhone is coming to Verizon, he does open up about Verizon's negotiations with Apple through the years. Here's how it went down:
• In 2005, Apple approached Verizon about carrying the iPhone. Verizon balked at giving Apple so much control.
• In 2007, just before the iPhone launched, Seidenberg went to Apple's HQ and asked Steve Jobs, "Why are we in your doghouse here?" (The two companies hadn't spoken since Verizon balked at Apple's terms in 2005.)"

You have to read the article, but when it comes out of the CEO's mouth, it's clear Verizon blew it.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 03:20

44. Whateverman (Posts: 3233; Member since: 17 May 2009)


Don't get me wrong, I saw that the former CEO said it. But the current CEO and the one before this one (Lowell McAdam) both say different. These are basically three different companies (Apple, Verizon and VZW) and four different former and current CEO's involved. And it seems one isn't communicating well with the others or some kind of break. I read all the same articles and it all just leaves me wondering who to believe.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 18:00

2. virtuo city (unregistered)


cant compare tmobile to to cricket or metro pcs...first of all you have cdma on one side and gsm on the other....and who's to stop att/tmobile to raise the prices and stall innovation once the deal is approved?

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 18:24

4. vvelez5 (Posts: 623; Member since: 29 Jan 2011)


I would call them other wireless companies that still want subscribers so therefore they will keep bringing better service and better phones with better prices. ATT buying T-mobile won't cause the apocalypse everyone is saying.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:02 1

6. Phoneguy007 (Posts: 218; Member since: 02 Jun 2011)


But really what would they gain buy spending 39 billion just to raise prices....that makes no sense at all....

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 00:55

40. p0rkguy (Posts: 684; Member since: 23 Nov 2010)


Exactly. I don't even know why they decided to bring those providers up. People visiting the US will use either TMo or AT&T for roaming. If there's no TMo, AT&T will be by default. You'd be surprised by how many people roam onto AT&T without knowing their expensive charges. US has one of the largest, greediest and expensive cellular service providers in the world.
Have you tried roaming in Canada while on AT&T?

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 18:57 1

5. myclevername (Posts: 94; Member since: 07 Jun 2010)


Maybe AT&T shouldn't have started running commercials about their takeover of T-mobile which in turn caused people to start leaving T-mobile because they didn't want anything to do with AT&T? Feel free to send this argument to the DOJ!
If AT&T gets T-mobile then they will be able to dictate to the cell phone manufacturers how things need to be on the largest GSM network in the country. AT&T can dictate that hones need to be loaded with irremovable crapware, phones need to be exclusive to AT&T or they will just not carry your line, your phones need to be this and that or else, your phones need to use Google or Bing only as their primary search engines, etc, etc, etc....

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:03 1

7. Phoneguy007 (Posts: 218; Member since: 02 Jun 2011)


but you forget that att does not make phones they simply provide service for them.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:43 1

12. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5954; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


Oh really? Have you forgotten the part about how AT&T will be a gate-keeper to 130 million odd customers? That has some leverage on manufacturers.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:59

14. Phoneguy007 (Posts: 218; Member since: 02 Jun 2011)


do you really think they will keep all those customers.....not at all they will at least have to give up 25% of those customers just like verizion when they got alltel....besides phone manufactures are in business to make money they will produce only what the consumer wants...if they dont thenthey will end up like nokia and rim loosing market to new phones/os that gives consumers what they want I mean look at android os....

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 21:04

20. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5954; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


Then what is your explanation for no Sammy GSII on VZW? Is it because VZW customers don't want the GSII? Or, maybe it is because VZW decided they didn't want to offer the Sammy GSII?

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:19

31. ardent1 (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Verizon has its own reason for rejecting the latest variant of the GSII. Maybe Verizon did the numbers of the last experiment such as the Galaxy S Fascinate v Captivate v Vibrant v Epic 4G and realize its better off not playing ball. I don't the answer and that includes most of the people here.

I do know Verizon doesn't have to explain themselves.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 10:32

46. Phoneguy007 (Posts: 218; Member since: 02 Jun 2011)


dont kno maby they has something else in store for vzw

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:11

29. ardent1 (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Cingular took a gamble on the iPhone and decided to meet Apple's terms. ATT, the successor to Cingular, grew its customer base in part due to the success of the iPhone. And here is the point people forget, ATT gave Apple a great deal to maintain its exclusive contract on the iPhone. That information points to financial incentives as opposed to customers since the iPhone played an important role in the growth of ATT's customer base. That so called "leverage" had more to do with money than customer base.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 00:49

39. p0rkguy (Posts: 684; Member since: 23 Nov 2010)


And phone manufacturers will provide hardware for those with a large market otherwise there'd be no profit.
Service providers don't require the need to go out and request a certain phone from a certain manufacturer. It's the other way around.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:20 2

8. The_Miz (Posts: 1496; Member since: 06 Apr 2011)


I think this merger should happen. It's good for business.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:44 1

13. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5954; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)


Whose business? Certainly not for cellular subscribers who will be hit with increased fees to pay for the merger cost.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:29

33. ardent1 (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


Doug, you are grasping at straws. ATT should point out there are many alternatives that exist today and may result in greater competition in the foreseeable future, respectively. For example, when Apple introduced Facetime, it allow people with access to wifi to make "video calls" on certain Apple devices. Additionally, people can make calls on Skype in lieu of traditional cell phone service. The DOJ must consider alternative means to traditional cell phone service!

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 01:02

41. p0rkguy (Posts: 684; Member since: 23 Nov 2010)


What are the alternatives for someone who is traveling from outside the country?
What is another reliable GSM network in the US other than AT&T and TMo?
Do you know the rates for AT&T when roaming?

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 01:52

42. ardent1 (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


@ p0rkguy: Are you saying if you have a Facetime device that you can't make "video calls" using the wifi/internet when abroad?

I could be wrong, but my understanding was you needed an Apple device that runs Facetime, wifi / internet, and an email-account for video calls.

My point is facetime is an alternative to all the current forms of cellular technology.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 15:21

51. p0rkguy (Posts: 684; Member since: 23 Nov 2010)


I'm not understanding analogy in this situation.
Yes you can make "video calls" with Facetime via wifi. What about it? There's also many other ways to make "video calls", not just Apple's.
If you're trying to say that people can just use Facetime instead of actually calling someone as an alternative, you really don' t know Facetime that well. You may think people use Facetime but it's actually less than 2% of Apple users that use it.
The fact is there is no other reliable GSM cellular service provider in the US other than AT&T and TMo.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 17:18

52. ardent1 (Posts: 1999; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)


@ p0rkguy

1. It's called disruptive technology meaning the technology is uncompetitive at first, but as the technology improves, it will displace the current de facto standard

2. I can't make voice calls on my iPod Touch, but I can make video calls on it. As "video call" technology improves, it will start displacing cell phones because you now have non-cell phones making "calls". I don't know when this will happen, but it fits the pattern of disruptive technology.

3. Use the analogy of cell phones and landlines. Initially, cell phones were expensive, bulky, etc. Eventually, cell phones displaced landlines. It took a while, but it happened.

The key take-away point is not about today's standards and today's GSM infrastructure, it's about how a "call" will be made, i.e. what are alternatives to the current cell phones now and in the future.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 20:19

15. Heatfan316 (Posts: 453; Member since: 21 Aug 2011)


@ Miz Explain why? I would love to hear this.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 12:32

47. The_Miz (Posts: 1496; Member since: 06 Apr 2011)


Because it's good for business. More service to people.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:25 1

9. Hi (unregistered)


Hm... this method is used by Apple? no?

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 19:26 1

10. drodriguezsd (Posts: 35; Member since: 10 Jun 2010)


Honestly, just give AT&T what they want. It'll be better for the people who have both AT&T and T-Mobile. A better quality network. If people are concerned with pricing...then it's true, they should look at Cricket which is very inexpensive and you get more bang for your buck. I don't see T-Mobile doing anything great with their network, nor do I see future plans for development. This whole thing is becoming a bigger deal than it needs to be. The consumers will be fine, as long as your phone bill doesn't cause you to become bankrupt...get over it and get something cheaper if you can't hang.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 20:41 1

18. Bacon_Hat (unregistered)


T-Mobile “firsts” include the first Android handset, Blackberry wireless e-mail, the Sidekick (a consumer “all-in-one” messaging device), national Wi-Fi “hotspot” access, and unlimited service plans.

Not bad for being the 4th largest carrier in the US. Besides removing a GSM rival, At&t doesn't have to incorporate future features or firsts from another rival carrier that they will need to stay competitive. Even Sprint innovated with its Any mobile, Any time feature.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 21:47 1

23. Atrix 4g (unregistered)


Its what have been saying all the time, T-Mobile is going to lose it cause the father company doesn't want T-Mobile here while smaller carriers like netropcs are rapidly increasing. Plus T-Mobile needs this because there coverage isn't that great. Oh and Att has way better prices than vzw for nearly same coverage, people wake up competition wont be lost metro and other smaller carriers are going to take the chance to become better.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 22:03 1

24. TKFox007 (Posts: 303; Member since: 02 Nov 2010)


Yeah that sounds like something AT&T would say. They really want to eliminate T-Mobile as a major competitor, because if they were afraid of those smaller companies, they would be buying them out instead.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 14:30

48. Phoneguy007 (Posts: 218; Member since: 02 Jun 2011)


but they are not for sell......tmo wants to sell!

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 22:30 1

25. Forsaken77 (Posts: 552; Member since: 09 Jun 2011)


AT&T isn't buying TMo because it's affraid of the competition from T-Mobile, not at all. They're buying them to keep them away from Sprint. If Sprint were to acquire TMo then they would be a formidable force. T-Mobile already uses most of AT&T's towers for service in alot of areas.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 00:46

38. p0rkguy (Posts: 684; Member since: 23 Nov 2010)


You said it yourself, if Sprint were to acquire TMo then they would be a formidable force. AT&T is afraid of competition, and now that they've lost their exclusivity with the iPhone they're even more afraid. They know their networks suck.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 22:37

26. Forsaken77 (Posts: 552; Member since: 09 Jun 2011)


And Bacon Grease, ur, Hat.... AT&T will be AHEAD of VZW in 2-3 years with technology... genius. So stop flapping your gums with Verizon propaganda. Everyone knows that once AT&T's LTE is in place, with HSPA+ as a back-up, it will have a better network over Verizons' LTE/3G network. I guess you can't think that far ahead with all that bacon in your hat.

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 00:43

37. p0rkguy (Posts: 684; Member since: 23 Nov 2010)


Why would you even think AT&T is ahead of VZW? VZW has always been ahead for the past few years. Only reason people think AT&T is ahead is because of their head start with the iPhone.

posted on 11 Sep 2011, 23:45 1

35. Mr.Mr.Upgrade (Posts: 425; Member since: 30 Aug 2011)


Just got the charge and I must say Verizon running things

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 00:13

36. webOSdev2.0 (Posts: 31; Member since: 17 Jan 2011)


PLEASEE ATTT I BEG YOU BUY TMOBILE I NEED SERVICE AT HOME!!

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 08:17 1

45. TKFox007 (Posts: 303; Member since: 02 Nov 2010)


Then switch to AT&T, if they buyout T-Mobile they're going to jack up your bill anyway

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 14:50

49. darth8ball (Posts: 519; Member since: 02 Aug 2011)


yeah and the CFL is a threat to the NFL. LMFAO

posted on 12 Sep 2011, 14:57

50. darth8ball (Posts: 519; Member since: 02 Aug 2011)


Oh yeah one other thing AT&T....
Your telling the government that you need to buy Tmo for the spectrum for your customers and to stay competitive...Dumb asses. Lest you forget that the spectrum you purchased last year from the same government and they know your not yet using makes them think even more that your up to no good and that you cannot be trusted.

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