Originally published: May 3, 2012
Last updated: May 3, 2012 - 7:40pm
The government's decision to block AT&T's takeover of Deutsche Telekom AG's T-Mobile USA unit will result in higher prices to consumers, AT&T Chairman and Chief Executive Randall Stephenson contended.
Speaking at the Milken Institute's annual global conference, Stephenson said that the U.S. wireless-telecommunications market can't sustain the current number of competitors because there isn't enough wireless spectrum for all of them. Based on current patterns, wireless data usage will increase 75% a year for at least five years, Stephenson said. "We're running out of the airwaves that this traffic rides on," he added. "There is a shortage of this spectrum." With or without a deal like the one his company unsuccessfully pursued, he said, competitors will be forced to drop out if they can't find enough wireless capacity to offer more modern data services to growing numbers of customers.
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