FCC pauses review of T-Mobile-Sprint deal to examine new arguments

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The Federal Communications Commission paused its review of T-Mobile's proposed purchase of Sprint, adding to an already protracted battle to win approval to combine the third- and fourth-largest US wireless providers. The move from the Republican-led agency created fresh turmoil for the $26.5 billion merger, which has been under review for more than eight months. “All indications were this would be decided in the next few weeks” but now it appears “they haven’t made the case to the policy makers,” said Gigi Sohn, a former FCC aide and merger opponent. “They’re still grasping at new theories.” The FCC said it wanted time to examine “significant additional information” filed in Feb and on March 7, when T-Mobile offered a 63-page filing updating plans for wireless in-home broadband service. Comments on the new submissions are due March 28, the FCC said. It paused a counter that tracks how many days the deal is under review at 122 days until resuming April 4. The agency attempts to complete its reviews in 180 days.

U.S. Pauses T-Mobile-Sprint Review in Sign of Fresh Turmoil FCC Public Notice