NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced on Tuesday that his office will conduct a thorough review of AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile, a merger that would create the nation's largest wireless company.
T-Mobile, which is a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom, is a low-cost provider in New York and has 34 million customers nationwide. It is the fourth-largest wireless company in the United states.
The merger would create a network with 130 million nationwide subscribers. The review would analyze the merger for possible anti-competitive impacts on businesses and consumers across the state of New York.
"Cell phones are no longer a luxury for a few among us, but a basic necessity. The last thing New Yorkers need during these difficult economic times is to see cell phone prices rise," Schneiderman said.
"Affordable wireless service and technology, including smart phones and next generation handheld devices, are the bridge to the digital broadband future. We want to ensure all New Yorkers benefit from these important innovations that improve lives."
If the merger goes through, AT&T and Verizon would control close to 80 percent of all wireless subscribers nationwide. Schneiderman expressed his concern about how the merger would impact consumers throughout the state.
The review will scrutinize AT&T's argument that the merger could produce some benefits, including claims that coverage on their next generation broadband wireless network would expand to rural areas in upstate New York that are underserved.