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Old 05-04-2008, 08:54 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Oh no... I hope this isn't true - what a terrible idea

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From the Wall St. Journal.

Deutsche Telekom Considers Bid for Sprint
Purchase Would Aid Effort to Move Beyond
A Tough Home Market

May 5, 2008

Deutsche Telekom AG is weighing a bid to acquire Sprint Nextel Corp. that could catapult the German telecommunications giant's wireless arm, T-Mobile USA, to the No. 1 position in the U.S., according to people familiar with the matter.

Deutsche Telekom's deliberations are at a preliminary stage and management may very well turn away, these people cautioned. If a bid is launched for Sprint Nextel, which has a stock-market capitalization of $22 billion and is the No. 3 player in the U.S. wireless market, it could still be weeks, or even months, away, they added.

The potential bid is being considered as the former German monopoly scouts for acquisitions in countries outside the German market, where it has seen its revenue shrink in recent years amid rising competition and falling prices. Last year, it booked just over 50% of its revenue outside Germany for the first time.

T-Mobile is a distant No. 4 in the U.S. wireless market, with 28.7 million customers at the end of December. It invested heavily last year to acquire new wireless spectrum and is eager to expand. By acquiring Sprint Nextel, it could roughly triple its client base in the U.S. and surpass leaders AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless, a joint venture of Verizon Communications Inc. and Vodafone Group PLC.

Bonn-based Deutsche Telekom increasingly is focusing on its international wireless businesses as its domestic fixed-line services slump. Its wireless businesses generated more than half of the company's 62.5 billion ($96.3 billion) in revenue and 19.3 billion in operating profit last year.

The U.S. has been the biggest growth engine. T-Mobile USA added 3.6 million customers last year, boosting its revenue to $19.3 billion from $17.1 billion in 2006. In February, Deutsche Telekom completed its $1.6 billion acquisition of U.S. carrier SunCom Wireless Holdings Inc., which had 1.1 million customers.

The German company has a stock-market capitalization of $79 billion and money to spend after whittling down its debts in recent years.

Deutsche Telekom has looked more closely at Sprint Nextel since the U.S. company's share price has fallen below $10, far below its 52-week high of $23.42. The German company also may opt to strike while the euro is near record highs against the dollar, according to people familiar with the matter.

Still, there are many arguments against Deutsche Telekom making such a move, these people add, with one of them describing it as "a long shot." One major complication is that T-Mobile USA uses different wireless technology than Sprint Nextel, which would complicate the integration of their networks and increase costs. It is also unclear if U.S. regulators would permit a tie-up of the No. 3 and No. 4 carriers.

Adding Sprint Nextel to its roster also would saddle Deutsche Telekom's management with another big restructuring task in addition to its German operations.

Sprint Nextel has been struggling to retain customers, and its revenue slipped to $40.1 billion last year from $41 billion in 2006. The U.S. carrier booked a net loss of $29.5 billion in the fourth quarter, triggered by a noncash goodwill impairment charge of $29.7 billion.

Deutsche Telekom's management also is busy with a deal that would give it roughly a 25% stake in Hellenic Telecommunications Organization SA, or OTE, Greece's dominant telecommunications company. It agreed in principle in March to buy an initial 20% stake for 2.5 billion, but negotiations with the Greek government over management powers have been difficult.
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I've seen this come through the rumor mill before....maybe there is some merit to it....ugh.
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:41 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Wirelessly posted (what does it matter?)

It pains me that there is even the slightest chance of this happening
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:45 PM   #4 (permalink)
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By acquiring Sprint Nextel, it could roughly triple its client base in the U.S. and surpass leaders AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless

Maybe at first. But when customers start leaving because you either dumped Sprint's entire high speed CDMA network or tried to run both networks under one roof, then they will be right where they are now, last. TMO to me is cheap talk for the kiddies, not serious data for mission critical applications. I could defiantly see Sprint's long time data customers leaving for ATT or VZW if TMO stepped into the picture.

Last edited by ArgonNJ : 05-04-2008 at 09:47 PM.
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:47 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I disagree with "not serious data for mission critical applications."

TMo works 95% of where I (and 15 other pilots in our department) go.
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Clark View Post
I disagree with "not serious data for mission critical applications."

TMo works 95% of where I (and 15 other pilots in our department) go.
I'm not saying it doesn't work, it just doesn't work as well as Sprint, ATT and VZW with their high speed networks (not talking just BBs here, but all data services). TMO is working on it, but they're not there yet.

Last edited by ArgonNJ : 05-04-2008 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 05-05-2008, 04:13 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I had T-Mobile for four years in the NYC/NJ metro area and found the service to be excellent with few dropped calls and coverage everywhere I traveled.

Seems like a smart move for T-Mobile who needs spectrum in the USA to expand voice and 3G. Sprint just lost a big court case making them give up spectrum in the 800mHz band before the government hands over promised relocated (2.1gHz?) spectrum. Isn't the 800mHz mostly Nextel's iDen? They have the cost of rebuilding the new relocated network, plus the cost of WiMax buildout. The big two (and DT in Europe) are going LTE.

Maybe T-Mobile will ditch iDen and CDMA and just rebuild with GSM/WiMax (or LTE) expanding on T-Mobile at the cost of losing iDen customers. Since there are phones that already do CDMA and GSM, they could transition that technology easier. And the network needs to be reallocated anyway so either company is looking at spending $Bs.

With the dollar is at an all time low. DT could pick up $B just as the exchange rate recovers. It could also open up a bidding war with the cable companies looking to partner and move into wireless to compete with QuadPlay.

Regards-Michael G.
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Old 05-05-2008, 05:04 AM   #8 (permalink)
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We use T-Mobile extensively, due to their outstanding international roaming agreements and support. Our customers do not care about high speed data networks - that is a consumer thing so they can send pictures and browse the web. They care that their call - and e-mail - get through.

Don't combine kiddies and executives - you are dead wrong.

During the past year virtually all of our Nextel based BBs have moved - to Verizon. Not to Sprint. These people never leave the US, so Verizon works for them.

Last edited by NJBlackBerry : 05-05-2008 at 05:05 AM.
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Old 05-05-2008, 07:14 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Seems like there would be a lot of expense and retooling to gain little more than girth.
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Old 05-05-2008, 07:30 AM   #10 (permalink)
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This makes my stomach hurt just thinking about it.
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Old 05-05-2008, 07:48 AM   #11 (permalink)
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go to tmonews.com
they say it is just a rumor.
personally, i think it could happen, it would expand thier coverage, that would be good
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Old 05-05-2008, 08:00 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJBlackBerry View Post
During the past year virtually all of our Nextel based BBs have moved - to Verizon. Not to Sprint. These people never leave the US, so Verizon works for them.
I know we have moved the majority of our users from Nextel to Verizon. All of the users have been very happy with this move as well.
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Old 05-05-2008, 08:59 AM   #13 (permalink)
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It would be another bad move to do this. Of course it is a bit of irony that they will all be one company again. Originally Sprint Spectrum - GSM. Sold off the network, it became something (i forget) very briefly. Then it changed the name to Voicestream. Then with the purchase by Tmo Germany, it became Tmo USA. Now Tmo Germany might purchase Sprint meaning its back to the same company again

But i do believe this is just another rumor. Sprint only lost what it did last year because it wrote off Nextel. And pushing THREE completely different wireless networks would be suicide.
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Old 05-05-2008, 09:42 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJBlackBerry View Post
Our customers do not care about high speed data networks...They care that their call - and e-mail - get through.
We'll many of Sprint's customers do care about the high speed network and if a buy out is intended to fold these customers into the slow GSM network of TMO, then you have a problem. Just like Nextel customers left when iden was orphaned, so will Sprint data users leave if they were ever forced to use the inferior TMO data network. Remember this isn't about BBs, its about consumers and their are far more data hungry consumers users out there then business BB users who only need voice, text and simple email.

Last edited by ArgonNJ : 05-05-2008 at 09:44 AM.
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Old 05-05-2008, 10:30 AM   #15 (permalink)
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But Sprint customers are leaving now... Sprint screwed up the Nextel buy, and are in a very weak position now, fast network or not.

Who do the carriers make more money on - corporations or teens who want fast access to Facebook.

Anyone who switches from EVDO to EDGE gets what they deserve!
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Old 05-05-2008, 10:57 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJBlackBerry View Post
But Sprint customers are leaving now... Sprint screwed up the Nextel buy, and are in a very weak position now, fast network or not.

Who do the carriers make more money on - corporations or teens who want fast access to Facebook.

Anyone who switches from EVDO to EDGE gets what they deserve!
My guess would be teens, since they far out number corporate users, especially on TMO. Ever see a teen who didn't own a cell phone, or who wasn't on it 23 hrs a day.

Last edited by ArgonNJ : 05-05-2008 at 10:58 AM.
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Old 05-05-2008, 11:44 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Yes, and when Mom and Dad get the bills, they normally have a conversation.

Both of my kids are on T-Mobile and have no complaints about the speed. Both teen agers.

Mom and Dad do not pay hundreds of dollars per month per account for roaming, and international fees. Companies do.
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Old 05-05-2008, 11:45 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I don't even pay for my son to have internet access on his phone - and it's blocked so he can't run up the bill. Voice and text messages only.
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:03 PM   #19 (permalink)
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So he's taking full advantage of that Sprint high speed network, right?
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Old 05-05-2008, 12:09 PM   #20 (permalink)
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As full advantage as I'll let him!

We never put an 'internet' plan on his phone and he kept racking up $75 - $100 a month in charges - even thought I had the internet services blocked on his line via the Sprint website. I had to call and have them block it (grrrrr). So no more internet for him - fast, slow, or otherwise.
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