Poll: AT&T's blockbuster deal for T-Mobile

AT&T headquarters in Michigan
Associated Press

Should government regulators let the nation's worst phone carrier - already a colossus - grow even larger through a blockbuster acquisition that would turn it into the biggest cell phone company in the United States?

That question is soon to get taken up by the Justice Department. On Sunday, AT&T announced it had reached agreement to buy T-Mobile USA from Deutsche Telekom AG in a cash-and-stock deal valued at $39 billion.

Sounds like a thrilling proposition if you're a shareholder at Deutsche Telekom. As for all the rest of us, you would be within your rights to offer a more restrained reaction. Oh, that crack about AT&T being the worst phone carrier around - that's not personal opinion: Last December, Consumer Reports published the results of a survey which reported that AT&T was the only carrier in its poll of subscribers whose overall satisfaction ratings had dropped "significantly."

In the days and weeks ahead, AT&T is sure to spin the deal as pro-consumer. But an acquisition of T-Mobile would also mean the disappearance of a cell carrier famous for its aggressive use of cheaper voice and data plans as a way of competing against bigger rivals. It would also leave just three national carriers: AT&T, Verizon and Sprint.

Bad news or a bonus for consumers? Take our poll and let us know what you think.

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