T Mobile Every InchCraig Moffett recently wrote, "The probability of regulatory approval at 50%, the odds of deal consummation are therefore something like 40%." At Bernstein, Moffett was perennially rated the #1 analyst on Wall Street when at Bernstein. He's remarkably creative. He's particularly well informed about D.C. Since at least 2009, he's made a point of actively building D.C. contacts at the highest level. FCC Commissioners care about Wall Street opinion and have often looked to Craig.

Jonathan Atkin of RBC agrees. "We continue to believe the likelihood of a Sprint/T-Mobile deal approval is less than 50%." Walter Piecyk believes, "There is less than 40% chance the Sprint/T-Mobile deal is approved by regulators."

My take: If D.C. gets the facts, the chance is less than 10%. If government people drink the Kool-Aid, it might just go through. 

dave askOn Oct 1, Verizon turned on the first $20B 5G mmWave network with extraordinary hopes. The actual results the first four months have been dismal. Good engineers tell me that will change. Meanwhile, the hype is unreal. Time for reporting closer to the truth.

The estimates you hear about 5G costs are wildly exaggerated. Verizon is building the most advanced wireless network while reducing capex. Deutsche Telekom and Orange/France Telecom also confirm they won't raise capex.

Massive MIMO in either 4G or "5G" can increase capacity 4X to 7X, including putting 2.3 GHz to 4.2 GHz to use. Carrier Aggregation, 256 QAM, and other tools double and triple that. Verizon sees cost/bit dropping 40% per year.

Cisco & others see traffic growth slowing to 30%/year or less.  I infer overcapacity almost everywhere.  

Believe it or not, 80% of 5G (mid-band) for several years will be slower than good 4G, which is more developed.


5G Why Verizon thinks differently and what to do about it is a new report I wrote for STL Partners and their clients.

STL Partners, a British consulting outfit I respect, commissioned me to ask why. That report is now out. If you're a client, download it here. If not, and corporate priced research is interesting to you, ask me to introduce you to one of the principals.

It was fascinating work because the answers aren't obvious. Lowell McAdam's company is spending $20B to cover 30M+ homes in the first stage. The progress in low & mid-band, both "4G" and "5G," has been remarkable. In most territories, millimetre wave will not be necessary to meet expected demand.