How long will T-Mobile stay number four?

Yahoo! News has an article on Deutsche Telekom’s dilemma regarding its T-Mobile USA unit. It appears that even with $3 billion and a billion dollars worth of spectrum, Deutsche will have a hard time making T-Mobile a viable provider of 4G services.

While the big boys, AT&T and Verizon build out their 4G LTE platforms, T-Mobile is not expected to afford the construction of its own LTE network. A partnership with AT&T would have been nice, but the allegedly forward looking U.S. Department of Justice nixed that piece of solid business judgment in the bud.

With Sprint mismanaging itself into a second tier regional carrier, and T-Mobile resigning itself to quasi 4G status, a weakened oligopoly is starting to show itself. Looks like all we have done is jacked up the transactions costs for getting us to a duopoly.

What type of restructure in our regulatory institutions would be necessary for avoiding this type of waste in the future?

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