Sprint and T-Mo­bile agree to com­bine in $26.5 bil­lion deal

Daily Times (Primos, PA) - - NATION+WORLD -

T-Mo­bile and Sprint reached a $26.5 bil­lion merger agree­ment Sun­day that would re­duce the U.S. wire­less in­dus­try to three ma­jor play­ers — that is, if the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion’s an­titrust reg­u­la­tors let the deal go through.

The na­tion’s third- and fourth-largest wire­less com­pa­nies have been con­sid­er­ing a com­bi­na­tion for years. But a 2014 at­tempt fell apart amid re­sis­tance from the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion.

Con­sumers worry a less crowded tele­com field could re­sult in higher prices, while work­ers unions are con­cerned about po­ten­tial job losses.

In a con­fer­ence call, Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure ac­knowl­edged that get­ting reg­u­la­tory ap­proval is “the ele­phant in the room.”

The com­pa­nies em­pha­sized that the deal would help ac­cel­er­ate their devel­op­ment of faster 5G wire­less net­works and en­sure that the U.S. doesn’t cede lead­er­ship on the tech­nol­ogy to China.

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