FCC wants AT&T to show there's a spectrum shortage

In a move that might actually come back and bite it, the FCC has asked AT&T (NYSE: T) to prove that network spectrum and capacity constraints make it essential to buy T-Mobile for $39 billion. The Commission wants "all plans, analyses and reports discussing the relative spectrum capacity constraints of the company."

This is the same FCC that has been wheedling in front of the broadcasters and Congress for more bandwidth to avert a "spectrum crunch." Now, according to a request posted on the FCC website, it wants AT&T to prove that it doesn't have enough spectrum to operate efficiently without acquiring T-Mobile.

AT&T said it would "provide the FCC with all the data it needs" and that the request is part of a "standard procedure" for the merger review where the Commission also asked about AT&T claims that it will create more jobs via the merger and whether it would continue to carry T-Mobile's brand and pricing.

For more:
- Bloomberg has this story

Industry Voices: AT&T rethinking possible life after iPhone exclusivity

Related articles:
AT&T's justifications for T-Mobile deal run into static
Skeptics aren't buying AT&T's T-Mobile spectrum argument

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