Sprint Corp and T-Mobile US Inc said over the weekend they have called off merger talks to create a stronger U.S. wireless company to rival market leaders, leaving No. 4 provider Sprint to engineer a turnaround on its own.
The announcement marks the latest failed attempt to combine the third- and fourth-largest U.S. wireless carriers, as Sprint parent SoftBank Group Corp and T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom AG show unwillingness to part with too much of their prized U.S. telecom assets. The failed merger could also help keep wireless prices low as all four providers have been heavily discounting their cellphone plans in a battle for consumers.
“Consumers are better off without the merger because Sprint and T-Mobile will continue to compete fiercely for budget-conscious customers,” said Erik Gordon, a Ross School of Business professor at the University of Michigan.