by Mike Masnick
Mon, May 5th 2008 4:10pm
There's a rumor going around that Deutsche Telekom is thinking about buying Sprint. This is a bad idea for any number of reasons. Deutsche Telekom owns T-Mobile, which competes with Sprint, and which has certainly fallen way behind AT&T, Verizon Wireless and Sprint in terms of coverage and next generation network deployments. At the same time Sprint has definitely faced some tough times recently that have weighed heavily on the stock. So, you could see why Deutsche might initially think about it. T-Mobile is behind in the game, and merging with Sprint could (emphasis on could) jumpstart the business a bit. Plus, it's reasonable to think that Sprint may be undervalued these days. But... it's still a bad idea. T-Mobile and Sprint use totally different network technologies. Sprint is still dealing with the mess of trying to integrate Nextel's iDen system into its own CDMA-based system (which is part of the reason the company has been in trouble lately), and dumping a third totally incompatible technology into the mix doesn't seem wise. You could (again, emphasis on could) argue that Sprint now has some experience merging totally incompatible networks, but so far it's not exactly good experience. All in all, this seems like someone tossing out a suggestion. It's hard to see this as a legitimate possibility.
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