Tem services say A merger between Sprint and T-Mobile has been rumored for a few years now, and back in April of 2018, T-Mobile CEO John Legere said that the two carriers would be joining forces, which raises a lot of questions and concerns, and changes the wireless landscape here in the United States.
As it stands, there are four major wireless carriers in the US: Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint. Verizon is the largest and AT&T is not far behind. Both T-Mobile and Sprint are distant a third and fourth respectively. Because both Verizon and AT&T are so large and powerful, it’s been difficult for T-Mobile and Sprint to compete, although T-Mobile has made significant strides in beefing up their infrastructure and data speeds. The merger of the two companies is said to allow for a third real competitor go toe-to-toe with Verizon and AT&T, something which neither T-Mobile or Sprint could do on their own.
The 5G Piece of the Puzzle
In addition to forming a strong third competitor, both T-Mobile and Sprint say the merger is vital to successfully deploying 5G, which is the next wireless technology that’s meant to be leaps and bounds faster and more reliable than 4G LTE. Both Verizon and AT&T are working on their 5G networks, and with the merger, it’s expected T-Mobile and Sprint will be able to be competitive when it comes to coverage and data speeds.
Whenever two large companies merger, there is always a fear that less competition means bad news for consumers, and until this deal gets finalized, it’s unclear who benefits and who loses. However, it’s safe to say that if the deal goes forward, Sprint’s current customers benefit in the short term because they will enjoy a larger coverage area. Recently, Sprint and T-Mobile signed an agreement that allows Sprint customers to connect to T-Mobile’s network while roaming without having to worry about penalties or a shock in their bill.
It’s worth mentioning that T-Mobile and Sprint operate on different wireless technologies, GSM and CDMA respectively. If the merger goes through, it’s safe to assume the company will merge the networks to a single technology (most likely GSM), which means that anyone with a CDMA-only phone will have to upgrade.
An advantage to having many competitors is that there’s a variety of pricing options as companies vie for your business. When you whittle competition down, there’s less incentive for a company to lower their prices to get people from their competitor. Which will make it easier for telecommunications consulting services.
Since the merger has yet to be approved by the Justice Department, Legere and Sprint CEO Marcelo Claire both say prices will remain the same for now. Most industry experts say cell plans across all three will eventually even out, which leaves customers with little choice when it comes to price.