A group of Democratic senators last week urged federal regulators to immediately begin an investigation of the potential impact of a merger between T-Mobile and Sprint.
Reports suggest that an agreement to merge the nation’s third- and fourth-largest wireless carriers could be announced by the end of the month, and the lawmakers argued that initiating a review would allow the Federal Communications Commission and the Justice Department “to quickly, but fully, review the agreement if it is announced.”
The senators, led by Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, the ranking member of the antitrust subcommittee, wrote that a merger between two of the four large U.S. carriers could lead to an increase in prices just as more and more Americans rely on smartphones as “the primary connection to the internet.”
Their letter to the FCC and DOJ particularly noted that Sprint and T-Mobile offered products and service plans “that are more appealing to lower-income consumers.”
“Competition among four major cell phone carriers has benefited consumers with lower prices, better service and more innovation,” the senators wrote. “We are concerned that consolidation will thwart those goals.”
The FCC recently issued a report that indicated healthy competition in the domestic wireless market but did not indicate how a potential T-Mobile-Sprint merger would impact the industry.
Filed Under: Industry regulations