News by Andrew Kameka on Thursday May 29, 2014.
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Sprint Chairman and SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son lives in Japan but he says he takes inspiration from "the American dream" and wants to make the United States shine as a beacon when it comes to the wireless industry. That's why, Son says, he wants to buy T-Mobile.
The cynical view is to say that Son really wants to buy T-Mobile because doing so would substantially add to Sprint's wireless spectrum holdings, customer base, and potential to become a challenger to AT&T and Verizon rather than a distant third-place carrier. However, Son claims that the US wireless industry needs an overhaul because service in the country is dreadfully inferior to developed Asian markets, and the US should be a leader. At the Code Conference in LA, the Sprint Chairman noted that Americans pay 10x as much for home internet service yet receive 10x slower speeds. He believes a combined Sprint and T-Mobile could build a wireless network strong enough to close that gap. He said at the conference
"If the Chinese wake up in the morning and see the air [quality], they say, 'Oh, this is a good morning.' But people from outside watching on the news said, 'Beijing has terrible air.' But people in Beijing don't notice every morning it's the same air. So, American people who live in America using the internet everday say, 'Ok, this is the internet.' But guys like us who use internet at the hotel or in my home in Silicon Valley, I say, 'Oh my God, how can America live like this?'"
Son's comments echo what he has been saying for months as part of a public campaign to garner support for purchasing T-Mobile. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has reportedly told Son in private that he would oppose an acquisition and publicly said consolidation of the wireless industry would not be in consumer's best interest. In Son's view, getting the two companies together is a matter of national pride. Plenty of wireless consumers would argue against that point, but the Sprint Chairman seems dedicated to garnering as much support as possible to merge the third and fourth largest carriers in the US.source: Recode, via: The Verge
Andrew is MobileBurn.com's managing editor. He is based in Miami, Florida.