Originally Posted by InfoDave
If all we need is a data plan, how will the telecoms make up for the lost voice plan revenue? More and more of our voice traffic is moving to VoIP, and the telecoms don't want to let that happen.
Yes, they'll need to reinvent their charging methodology. Voice traffic in GSM uses a 9.6Kbps data connection. In comparison to the amount of data phones are throwing around, voice is becoming a tiny impact on the network.
It will, at some point, make more sense to make voice calls free, but charge for data. The problem with charging for data though is people don't know how much they've used in 10 minutes, where with a call that's THEORETICALLY a much clearer answer. Of course, with some complicated phone plans and caps it can be hard to work out anything.
Originally Posted by lowededwookie
Capitalism doesn't work and has never worked. It just serves to screw the little people and make the already rich even richer.
I disagree. Competition forces efficiency and other improvements to a system, where socialism (etc) relies on natural improvements. But for capitalism to work it has to be possible to fail. If a company is so big that it can run large parts of itself inefficiently without 'dying', then the natural pressure to improve is removed.
We probably need 10 competitors in most fields (Nokia and Motorola should never merge!). Any company in an established field shouldn't have more than 20 (or 30%?) of the market - but splitting a company isn't a punishment, just a natural evolution. But that's not the way it works... and it's a much tougher call on cable & telco companies where duplicating massive infrastructure really can be way too inefficient for the competitive gains to alleviate.
I would think that a lot of AT&T's gains from this merger could have come from renting space on T-Mobile towers. It's not just getting more towers - T-mobile works on higher frequencies which require more towers and better placement, so using the towers will be very beneficial to AT&T.
AT&T will gain further with T-Mobile's 1900Mhz frequency (currently used for 2G). With free 'roaming' between networks until the networks themselves merge, they can refarm excess 1900Mhz to expand AT&T 3G. The 1700 will be interesting to watch as it's not very common. I'm not sure whether the 1700 can be split from the 2100 in any meaningful way - probably not. And of course, being good for AT&T is totally unrelated to being good for competition!