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It hopes cost savings will find their way into prices

AT&T's potential acquisition of DirecTV has many feeling skeptical due to the possibility of higher prices and fewer choices for consumers, and the telecom company's latest remarks in hearings with lawmakers didn't seem to ease that skepticism.

According to Reuters, AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson told lawmakers at hearings in the House of Representatives and the Senate that he can't promise lower prices for consumers "dollar-for-dollar" in the way of savings from lower content fees. 

However, he does see potential savings in other forms. 

"One would have to believe in the market and the market pressures, and that market pressures will compete margins away and cost savings will find their way into prices," said Stephenson.

DirecTV CEO Michael White added that savings could possibly be seen in the way of value bundles, but that committing to lower prices is difficult because of current content prices.

Both companies agree that a merger would allow them to provide rural areas with better Internet services and compete with cable companies.

But many are still concerned about what such a merger means for competition in the cable market, since both AT&T and DirecTV are in the same business. 

The Justice Department and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will ultimately decide the fate of the merger. 

AT&T and DirecTV announced their $48.5 billion USD merger just last month. 

The merger comes at a sensitive time when consumers, lawmakers and the tech industry are still dealing with Comcast's $45 billion USD purchase of Time Warner Cable. 

Source: Reuters

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By Samus on 6/25/2014 5:55:27 PM , Rating: 5
As much as I hate AT&T, I think Verizon is a far more dangerous monopoly. AT&T + Verizon, as companies, account for most internet subscribers, most cable subscribers (in the form of Time Warner and Comcast subsidiaries for Verizon), and most cell phone subscribers.

I don't think people realize exactly how small T-mobile and Sprint are. Together, they have less than HALF the subscribers Verizon does, and still far less than AT&T, which is why the merger may actually succeed between the two.

Comcast/Time Warner should never have been able to merge under the Verizon umbrella. But the lobbyists did their job with a Trojan horse running the FCC.

By Camikazi on 6/26/2014 10:29:00 AM , Rating: 2
Verizon doesn't own either Comcast or Time Warner, Comcast and Verizon have partnerships but they do not have ownership of each other and Time Warner is on its own as well.

"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone

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