10 State Attorneys General Sue to Stop Sprint T-Mobile Merger

The proposed merger of telco giants Sprint and T-Mobile is getting some significant push-back: On Tuesday, 10 states including California, New York and the District of Columbia, sued to prevent the merger from going forward. The lawsuit alleges that the merger will reduce competition, leading to higher prices and less access for consumers.

T-Mobile didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

“This is exactly the sort of consumer-harming, job-killing megamerger our antitrust laws were designed to prevent,” said New York attorney general Letitia James in a statement Tuesday. “Although T-Mobile and Sprint may be promising faster, better, and cheaper service with this merger, the evidence weighs against it,” said California attorney general Xavier Becerra.

Sprint and T-Mobile first announced their merger plans in April of 2018. The deal has since gotten the backing of FCC Chairman Ajit Pai following a commitment to spin off Sprint’s Boost Mobile prepaid carrier as well as to accelerate the build-out of 5G infrastructure. The latter commitment would ensure that 85% of rural Americans would have access to T-Mobile’s 5G network within three years, and 90% within six years.

In their lawsuit, the ten states allege that these commitments were hard to verify, and didn’t address their core concerns of price increases for low-income consumers.

“Currently, the average U.S. household spends approximately $1,100 annually on cellphone services,” the state attorneys wrote in a joint media release. “For many families, especially those with lower incomes, even a small price increase can result in suspension or cancellation of cellphone service.”

The lawsuit, which was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, Sprint and T-Mobile as well as T-Mobile’s corporate parent Deutsche Telekom and Sprint majority owner Softbank as defendants. In addition to California, New York and D.C., the lawsuit was also joined by Colorado, Connecticut, Maryland, Mississippi, Virginia and Wisconsin.

More Digital

  • Illustration of the video streaming company

    Netflix Insists It Won't Move Into Selling Advertising

    Netflix wants you to know: It doesn’t have any plans now or in the future to start running commercials on its streaming service. Company execs have have regularly explained that being ad-free is a core part of Netflix’s attractiveness to consumers, and the strategy has been a standard part of its “Long-Term View” mission statement [...]

  • MODEL RELEASED Hand holding iPhone with

    Netflix to Launch Lower-Priced Mobile-Only Plan in India

    Following several months of testing, Netflix is getting ready to officially launch a mobile-only plan in India. Priced significantly below its regular subscription plans, the new plan is meant to help the company better compete with local players like Hotstar. Netflix announced the step in its Q2 2019 earnings letter to investors Wednesday, writing: “We [...]

  • Always Be My Maybe

    'The Perfect Date,' 'Always Be My Maybe' Draw Big Crowds on Netflix

    Rom-coms are working for Netflix: “The Perfect Date,” a romantic comedy starring Noah Centineo from the company’s hit movie “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before,” has been viewed by 48 million subscriber households in its first four weeks on the service, Netflix revealed Wednesday. And “Always Be My Maybe,” starring Ali Wong and Randall [...]

  • Nintendo Switch

    Nintendo Releases Updated Switch With Better Battery

    Nintendo just refreshed its wildly successful Switch game console, but the company isn’t giving existing Switch owners many reasons to upgrade: The renewed game console comes with a better battery that guarantees up to 9 hours of game play, while otherwise sticking with the same design and features of the original Switch. The new model [...]

  • Ryan Chanantry - Topic SVOD

    First Look Media's Topic Plans to Launch Subscription VOD Service (EXCLUSIVE)

    Can Topic execute a solid pivot into premium video? The digital storytelling outlet of Pierre Omidyar’s First Look Media thinks it can put together a niche Netflix-style subscription-video service curated to appeal to young “culture cravers.” Topic plans to launch the subscription VOD service in the fourth quarter of 2019, stocked with hundreds of hours [...]

  • Dan Ahdoot

    This New Podcast Lets You Take a Peek Into Celebrities' Fridges (EXCLUSIVE)

    Comedian Dan Ahdoot wants to show you a side of celebrities you haven’t seen before — which is why he is having them open up their fridges. Anyone appearing on Ahdoot’s new podcast “Green Eggs & Dan,” which was launched by the podcast network Podglomerate Wednesday, has to bring along a photo of the inside [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content