John Legere poses as a superhero in T-Mobile's new #DefeatDuopoly campaign

John Legere is definitely one of the most vibrant personalities in the tech world, and it looks like the T-Mobile CEO is now a superhero as well.

In a recent T-Mobile ad that attempts to raise public awareness regarding the upcoming 600Mhz spectrum auction, which will take place in 2016, John Legere takes up the role of a superhero. The enemy? A dual-headed villain that wants to control all of the low-frequency spectrum available in the United States. As many might have guessed already, the dual-headed villain represents the AT&T/Verizon duopoly. 

In 2016, US carriers will participate in an auction for the 600MHz spectrum. T-Mobile's John Legere claims that, due to the rules of the auction, Verizon and AT&T are very likely to dominate the auction, and control most of the low-frequency spectrum that the FCC is now auctioning, much like the two biggest carriers in the United States did last year in the AWS-3 spectrum auction.

While AT&T and Verizon obviously want to maintain the rules as they are at the moment, T-Mobile wants the FCC to reserve half of the spectrum for smaller carriers. The reasoning here is that AT&T and Verizon already control more low-frequency airways than they currently need, and that they should not be allowed to control this limited but very important resource. Legere is urging the US public to back up this campaign by tweeting to the @FCC that they support it. On July 16th, the FCC will make a decision to enforce new auction rules or maintain the old ones.



1. VernonDozier

Posts: 1; Member since: Jun 23, 2015

Defeating duopoly could easily be attained if T-Mobile played by the rules of the industry. Why didn't they bid (and win) spectrum in the past..? Maybe they just prefer to play the game of handouts and government welfare. After all, when AT&T gave them free spectrum and $5,000,000,000.00 in cash when the merger didn't work out, he thanked AT&T for the free loot. John Legere is a risky scheme, and the German based company might as well convince lawmakers to raise US taxes for the deficit of revenue collected at the auction.

3. o0Exia0o

Posts: 903; Member since: Feb 01, 2013

Here's the thing... When you look at how much money VZW and AT&T have available VS the cash that T-Mo has there is no comparison.... 5 Million in the face of a company who's profits are in the billions per year is more like a drop in the pond... Point being that T-Mo cant compete on the same field as AT&T or VZW.... On Legere... I don't care for him... I think that he's a pompous prick.... He is playing the only card available to him and acting like he cares about the consumer as a person and not a revenue source.... Had he been the CEO of AT&T or Verizon his tone would be different....Given the chance he would rape consumers wallets just the same as they do...The difference being that T-Mo doesn't have nearly the size of network that ATT of VZW has, so he has to play his hand as the pro-consume choice in the US wireless arena....Just my 2 cents though...

6. TheRequiem

Posts: 245; Member since: Mar 23, 2012

I don't agree with this assessment - T-Mobile and Sprint are not small companies, they have about 60 millions customer's each. These are very large corporations competing with other large corporations. Not only that, T-Mobile and Sprint are both backed by very powerful multi-billion dollar international corporations as well. The real issue here is really the fact of how much monopolization and control AT&T and Verizon have over the market and politics. They also don't exactly have a lot of cash reserve either, both of them just spent billions on AWS spectrum and Verizon just had one of the largest bills I've ever seen when they bought most of their company back from it's European subsidy and AT&T is in the process of a $50 billion transaction with Direct TV, these are very large and fund consuming purchases. They won't have much more cash flow then either Sprint or T-Mobile at next year's auction. The network thing is a moot point too, within a couple of years, both T-Mobile's & Sprint's networks, along with their native roaming agreements will be pretty much the same coverage size as AT&T's and Verizon's. Not only that - Sprint is in the process of densifying it's network and expanding coverage and T-Mobile is already dense and right now they are expanding coverage. Won't be long before these projects are done and suddenly coverage will be a non-issue. What will matter for consumer's is the fact they can go to another carrier, get the same coverage and speed at a far lower price point. The bottom line is, the FCC needs to make as much low-band spectrum available to smaller carriers as possible so they can equalize coverage and really compete against Verizon's and AT&T dominant control over the market.

8. o0Exia0o

Posts: 903; Member since: Feb 01, 2013

Compared to VZW and ATT both Sprint and T-Mo are small corporations. While Sprint is backed my a multi-billion dollar corporation, T-Mo's largest share holder Dutch Telecom may be a multi-billion dollar corp. but they have no interest in T-Mo... They want to sell off their shares to refocus on the European wireless market... Even T-Mo's latest earnings report shows a modest revenue income, In the hundred-million dollar range, compared to say ATT which raked in somewhere around 3 billion... Even if you were to combine Sprint and T-Mo together the end result would not equal the size of ATT or VZW... So ATT and Verizon have made a couple of purchases lately? Those purchases, while they do affect income returns, were financed through banks. Meaning that they will have to pay them off over time VS all at once and will have no effect on their plans of expansion or bidding in future auctions... Why is it that EVERYONE seems to think that 5 Million is such a large amount of money to these multi-billion dollar corporations? 5 million is NOTHING.... The spectrum and roaming agreements that they acquired was worth more to them than the money...

10. superguy

Posts: 443; Member since: Jul 15, 2011

I disagree. We've been hearing the same story for years about T-Mobile and Sprint being behind but in a couple years, things will be on par with AT&T and Verizon. It hasn't happened. I live in the Baltimore/Washington area, which is one of the first places Sprint always builds up when something comes out. Their service is still abysmal here. My friend was a Sprint loyalist for years and barely knew what a 4G signal was (whether WiMax or LTE) until he dumped them and went to Verizon. So, if their service still sucks in a "fortress" area for Sprint, it doesn't give me confidence that their service will be any better elsewhere. If you roam too much, Sprint will cut you off. T-Mobile at least has has a better value proposition in what they offer, especially if you travel internationally. Fact of the matter is that spectrum aside, neither company has the money to invest in their networks that the other bigger does. As o0Exia0o said, Deutsche Telekom doesn't have much interest in T-Mo USA. Sprint has SoftBank backing them and maybe that will change, but even in Japan, SoftBank isn't that great of a carrier. The money situation isn't going to change anytime soon. Take a look at the traffic in their stores. AT&T and Verizon both have busy stores and often have waits (note I'm not talking about CS at the moment). AT&T and Verizon have their marketshares because they have large networks that reach everywhere people want to be. T-Mo is busy as they offer a good value proposition for people who can accept its shortcomings. Sprint, well, I really don't know what they can offer. Buying spectrum doesn't mean a whole lot if you don't have the towers to make use of it. Until Sprint and T-Mo widen their coverage, their going to continue to be "value" carriers.

13. o0Exia0o

Posts: 903; Member since: Feb 01, 2013


2. superguy

Posts: 443; Member since: Jul 15, 2011

"Low bandwidth spectrum" is incorrect. It should be "low frequency spectrum." Shannon's Theorem doesn't factor in frequency when determining the capacity of a channel. A 20 MHz slice of spectrum will give you the same bandwidth with the same modulation and signal to noise ration no matter the frequency since 20 MHz is 20 MHz. Low frequency spectrum is desirable due longer range and better indoor penetration ability.

4. mihai.a

Posts: 47; Member since: Apr 15, 2015

Yes, you're right. Thanks for pointing out this error!

9. superguy

Posts: 443; Member since: Jul 15, 2011

Glad I could help! :)

5. Sprissy

Posts: 193; Member since: Feb 11, 2012

Regardless of how you feel about Legere he has been good for consumers, I know if you are one of the luckly ones who still have unlimited data you may not notice but for those of us who don't the price wars that Legere has managed to bring on has definitely helped drop my monthly I hope he continues like he is and that T-Mobile thrives, cause it seems to be good for all of us that even if we aren't with unmarried.

7. Sprissy

Posts: 193; Member since: Feb 11, 2012

That last word is suppose to be "uncarrier"......

11. superguy

Posts: 443; Member since: Jul 15, 2011

I agree that he's been good for the market and has shaken things up, but it's not because he's benevolent. He didn't have a choice but to in order to try to turn T-Mo around. I'm grateful for him shaking up the market but as was mentioned earlier, I also don't think for a minute that he wouldn't be screwing us along with Verizon and AT&T if he had the network to do it.

14. o0Exia0o

Posts: 903; Member since: Feb 01, 2013

Well, all one has to do is look at what this pro-consumer stance has brought... How much advertising has T-Mo gotten basically for free because Legere has been running around shooting his mouth off about how US wireless customers are being screwed... That's the reality of the situation... The only reason Legere has done and continues to do things like this is for the free advertising T-Mo gets when he does.... The reality of the situation is that if T-Mo had a network that rivaled AT&T's or VZW's he would be charging as much as they are and you'd never know who he was beyond the fact that he is the CEO of T-Mo...That's the truth of it all...

12. NateAdam8

Posts: 436; Member since: Feb 17, 2012

Please bring it to the lower States

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