Arizona Corporation Commission Approves AT&T/T-Mobile Merger
Says deal does not adversely affect customers, improves service
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 7/5/2011 10:50:17 AM
The commission, which is Arizona's version of a Public Utility Commission but with more expanded powers, recommended that AT&T's proposed $39 billion purchase of T-Mobile be approved, saying that it does not adversely affect customers or prevent either company from providing "safe, reasonable and adequate" service.
Beyond that, the commission concluded that the benefits the two companies said would result from the deal "are important to the continued and future quality of telecommunications services to Arizona consumers."
Those include higher quality service in the state, alleviation of the "impending spectrum crisis," expansion of fourth-generation wireless, including a 300% increase in geographical coverage and service to un-served and under-served rural areas.
"After a thorough review of the facts we are pleased the Arizona Corporation Commission formally approved our merger. We look forward to bringing the latest wireless broadband technology, 4G LTE, to the citizens of Arizona," said AT&T in a statement.
AT&T has said that the deal will allow it to reach 97% of the country with 4G wireless, which squares with the President's State of the Union goals for wireless broadband buildout. Critics of the deal argue AT&T could expand without buying one of its national competitors.
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