Back in October, it was announced that T-Mobile would be acquiring regional carrier MetroPCS, but the deal isn't final just yet. It obviously has to pass through several government barriers before it can officially happen. However, there's one less hurdle to jump now, as the Department of Justice has given the merger the green light.
After a bunch of rumors, last week the merger between T-Mobile and MetroPCS became official. At the time, T-Mobile executives were saying that the merger would close sometime in the first half of 2013, and today, T-Mobile's parent company Deutsche Telekom is getting a little more specific about that window. In an interview with German newspaper Boersenzeitung (as reported by Reuters), Deutsche Telekom CFO Timotheus Hoettges said that money probably won't change hands until the second quarter of next year.
Earlier today T-Mobile and MetroPCS announced that they'd reached a deal that would lead to them merging together to create a brand new publicly traded company, and this afternoon, T-Mobile's CEO John Legere has released a video explaining the deal. What he lets the public know - and perhaps more importantly here the employees of both companies and the investors and boards of both companies know - is that this is an entirely positive move. Perhaps the most important sentence in the entire presentation reads: "This isn't a deal to survive - it's to thrive."
If you're thinking that T-Mobile will be grabbing one whole heck of a lot of LTE now that MetroPCS has joined the team, you'd be right - sort of. What the team has announced today is that should their merger work out, they'd be turning off MetroPCS's 1XCDMA network by the end of 2015 with sharing occurring between them and T-Mobile amounting to at least 50Mhz of wireless spectrum in key cities across the USA. With the spectrum they share, T-Mobile and MetroPCS would begin rolling out a "20x20" LTE network that'd be potentially twice as fast as Verizon's network.
After the hassle that T-Mobile went through during the bungled AT&T acquisition proposition, one might think the company is sour on the idea of mergers right now. But then again, it ended up getting billions of dollars in a concession deal with AT&T and it didn't even have to give up anything, so it's not all bad. Nevertheless, T-Mobile's subscription numbers are way down and now it's looking for something to give itself a huge jolt to get back in the game.
As you may or may not know, for quite a few weeks now T-Mobile and AT&T have been in dealings leading to what they hope will be a merger between them - what we're seeing this week is that the Department of Justice here in the USA has filed a lawsuit that would block the merger in U.S. District Court. You can read all about the case from the AT&T side in a post from yesterday, then you can head below and see how T-Mobile feels about the situation via an internal e-mail sent by the CEO of the T-Mobile USA group to employees. What you'll find is similar sentiments to the AT&T crew, surprise at the lawsuit, vows to fight back, and a call to build on the positive momentum the T-Mo has reportedly built in the past few months.
It's time for Virgin Mobile's "Sparah" to take on T-Mobile and AT&T in an advertisement that not only paints the stark white backgrounds of T-Mobile, AT&T, Apple, and etcetera commercials black, they take T-Mobile and AT&T's characters down with them. Sparah is the name of Virgin Mobile USA's summer 2011 marketing campaign, one in which two supposed complete strangers have been lifted from obscurity to be manufactured into a celebrity couple to promote Virgin Mobile - Spencer Falls and Sarah Carroll. Apparently they're very popular and everyone in the celebrity world hates them or loves them or some combination of the two - now they're coming down on T-Mobile and AT&T with some sweet video action.
In a press release Friday, Jim Alling, T-Mobile Chief Operations Operator, answered some of the questions we'd seen posed by the community in the wake of the biggest news this week. In a press release sent to "Dear Valued T-Mobile Customers", Alling assuaged the fears and lauded the benefits of the merger. From a purely technical standpoint it's going to be a great move for the US wireless network, if everything goes well during the regulatory and review process over the next year, there's going to be a double-thick wireless network from the overlapping mesh of LTE towers all under AT&T's hand.
Yesterday's bombshell that AT&T would be buying T-Mobile USA for $39 Billion in cash and stock send shockwaves all over the industry yesterday, but today, the aftershocks have just as much resonance. AT&T representatives have casually mentioned that T-Mobile customers will have to replace their 3G phones once the merger is approved. The mandatory upgrade is due to the fact that AT&T will be spending over $8 billion to convert T-Mobile's entire network of 3G towers to 4G, rendering T-Mobile customers 3G phones obsolete sooner or later.
When it comes to odd bedfellows, GSM and CDMA generally don't mix, but according to the latest carrier rumors that may not be the case forever. Businessweek's sources claim Sprint is in talks with Deutsche Telekon over buying T-Mobile USA in return for "a major stake" in the resulting combined company, with negotiations currently caught up on a fair valuation of T-Mobile.