AT&T's T-Mobile acquisition could stifle innovation

Posted by Starr Keshet

The chairman of the House subcommittee on communications and technology has expressed concern over AT&T's planned acquisition of T-Mobile.

Representative Greg Walden explained that the pending deal could diminish the "vibrant and competitive" nature of the wireless market.

"It seems to me if there are fewer and fewer players in a market, there's less and less opportunity for that creative innovation and invention that has occurred so far in the wireless market," he opined.

AT&T's T-Mobile acquisition could stifle innovation"The FCC needs to look in the mirror on this one because we're going to come at them very strongly, very forcefully. We're going to have a series of hearings to get all these issues out in the open. We're [definitely] not going to cram something through."

However, Walden declined to comment on whether the acquisition would directly "threaten" other players in the wireless space.

Instead, the congressman said wireless is a "market that works pretty well because you have a lot of players in it," and stressed the importance of "keeping it a vibrant, competitive" marketplace.

"If you get to the point - and I'm not saying that's the case here - where you get down to a very few or one or two players, it's [a hard case to make that] there's lot of innovation going on," he added.

[Via Reuters and Politico]