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AT&T says Sprint suit to block T-Mobile deal is not about maintaining competition

post #1 of 35
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AT&T has fired back in the salvo between top US mobile carriers, accusing Sprint of seeking to block the deal just to protect its own interests, while defending the merger as a win-win for consumers.

In a statement defending the $39 billion deal, AT&T said, "This simply demonstrates what weve said all along Sprint is more interested in protecting itself than it is in promoting competition that benefits consumers.

"We of course will vigorously contest this matter in court as AT&Ts merger with T-Mobile USA will: help solve our nations spectrum exhaust situation and improve wireless service for millions; allow AT&T to expand 4G LTE mobile broadband to another 55 million Americans, or 97% of the population; and result in billions of additional investment and tens of thousands of jobs, at a time when our nation needs them most."

Sprint has most recently cited iPhone exclusivity as an example of how big carriers could push smaller rivals out of the game. However, Sprint is expected to carry the IPhone later this fall, so Sprint's efforts to block the deal could only have the reverse effect of depriving an independent T-Mobile from selling the popular smartphone.

Blogger John Gruber of the Daring Fireball cited Sprint's merger objection related to its inability to carry the iPhone as a "tacit admission from Sprint that it is at a competitive disadvantage without the iPhone."

Gruber added, "seems obvious to me, of course, and probably to most regular DF readers. But how do the Android supporters who insist that Android is 'winning' square that belief with this?"
post #2 of 35
"Gruber added, "seems obvious to me, of course, and probably to most regular DF readers. But how do the Android supporters who insist that Android is 'winning' square that belief with this?""

I would assume their world would have been turned upside down
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post #3 of 35
How anyone can say this merger is good for consumers with a straight face is beyond me.
post #4 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post

How anyone can say this merger is good for consumers with a straight face is beyond me.

Count me as one who can say it with a straight face. First, explain how having T-Mobile has created competition. Most who are against this deal keep saying that the big players run the market, so how does T-mobile help?

Also, if T-Mobile is not merged there is a strong possibility that they will go away. How does that figure into your plan?

It is called the free market, get used to it.
post #5 of 35
So now it's Apple's fault for giving Sprint the iPhone before the others? I bet Apple when to Sprint with the iPhone and Sprint foolishly negotiated their way out of a deal. If you notice Apple's carrier contracts they typically don't go with the largest carrier in a country. I think as soon as Apple had a CDMA-based iPhone in the works they were in talks with Sprint.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post

How anyone can say this merger is good for consumers with a straight face is beyond me.

I'm with fizzmaster. T-Mobile USA being allowed to continually lose customers as the other carriers get the iPhone and thrive will not help competition. Having the US gov't bail out T-Mobile USA to keep them afloat will not help competition.

If Deutsche Telecom wants out of the US market and AT&T is willing to buy them I'm all for it. The only concession I have is that the spectrum not be completely given to AT&T, but Verizon and Sprint to bid or pay for a percentage.

This is how fair competition should work and I think three major MNOs in the contiguous US will render the same level of healthy competition that three major MNOs and a faltering fourth MNO could.

What we really need is the government to look into potential oligopolies between the carriers keeping data, voice and, most of all, SMS charges so damn high. That's where I cry foul.
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post #6 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzmaster View Post

Count me as one who can say it with a straight face. First, explain how having T-Mobile has created competition. Most who are against this deal keep saying that the big players run the market, so how does T-mobile help?

Also, if T-Mobile is not merged there is a strong possibility that they will go away. How does that figure into your plan?

It is called the free market, get used to it.

I partly agree with you. I mean AT&T and Verizon run the business whether T-Mobile is there or not to be honest. Also, to me it seems like T-Mobile's parent company want to get out of the US market. I have not read this anywhere, but I have a feeling that if this deal doesn't go thru T-Mobile will begin a slow and steady decline anyways. I could obviously be wrong.

At the same time though, I do understand why people would be opposed to this deal. Just for the plain fact that AT&T and Verizon have really been pissing me off as of late. With all these price increases, wanting to find anyway to take users off their grandfathered unlimited plans, cancellation fee increases, early upgrade fee increase, etc etc etc. The list goes on and on. So I guess people feel like (and rightly so) that there needs to be competition to try and slow this duopoly down.

I dont know what side to choose so I stay neutral. I just don't care since Im with AT&T for now. But who knows maybe when the iPhone gets 4G I may switch to sprint since the calls and internet will be on different bands
post #7 of 35
AT&T whether you're on their network or not is right about one of biggest things with carriors. the US infastructure is WAY behind EU. i don't even have 3G where i'm at yet, and other countries have almost full nationwide 4G. This merger would help millions if AT&T follows through on their promise to use the 4G tech from tmobile to expand their network. even if you're on a competing carrior. cuase lets phase it, roaming is a big part of of our service. Hell when i had sprint as a service, i spent more time on other carriors towers roaming then i did on sprints weaker coverage. AT&T and verizon own most of the towers in the country. Whether you are with them or not, you have to realize that their networks are the foundation of our mobile infratructure, so upgrading that infrastructure is in the interest of EVERYONE. THAT is what AT&T is saying.
post #8 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzmaster View Post

Count me as one who can say it with a straight face. First, explain how having T-Mobile has created competition. Most who are against this deal keep saying that the big players run the market, so how does T-mobile help?

Also, if T-Mobile is not merged there is a strong possibility that they will go away. How does that figure into your plan?

It is called the free market, get used to it.

Yea. At first I was all against, but now I really don't see any other customer for the poor t mobile. If we had more spectrum somehow more companies would have made sense. Today we basically have two networks, with everyone else renting space from them.

If sprint wants to keep t mobile from AT&T it should buy it and use the spectrum for its own if technologically feasible. If not there is not point in keeping t mobile on life support or letting it go away completely.
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post #9 of 35
All it really boils down to is that Sprint is pissed at AT&T for negotiating behind Sprints back with T-Mobile, all I can say is I hope Sprint goes belly up (Bankrupted) for being sore losers.
post #10 of 35
Wait, so this is news? ATT claims that Sprint is just in it for their own interests and not for the "competition"? I wonder if somewhere in ATT mobile's shareholder agreement it says that ATT is a charity not interested in maximizing profit.

You really have to worry when a giant company starts claiming that it's doing ANYTHING for the good of society. That's not it's job, and not what it should be doing. Companies exist to make money. Charities exist to waste it and they do that plenty well.
post #11 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by eacumm View Post

All it really boils down to is that Sprint is pissed at AT&T for negotiating behind Sprints back with T-Mobile

Uh, no. That would never have happened anyway. Sprint's CDMA. No way is AT&T going to replace millions of phones for free.

Quote:
all I can say is I hope Sprint goes belly up (Bankrupted) for being sore losers.

It's quite sad how little you know about the telecoms. You can't hold grudges against any of them. The more we have, the harder it is for them all (well, it's only 4 now) to collude. You need Sprint more than you could possibly know.

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post #12 of 35
I had Alltel for 7+ years, moved to Sprint for a year, switched to AT&T the first day the first iPhone came out.

AT&T - Hands down the best service out of the 3.

I'm totally behind AT&T buying T-Mobile and improving and increasing my whole family's and 99% of my friends service.

The government should stay the hell out of my personal life which includes my cell/mobile service.

Sprint service sucks, that's why they didn't get an iPhone to begin with.
post #13 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Uh, no. That would never have happened anyway. Sprint's CDMA. No way is AT&T going to replace millions of phones for free.


It's quite sad how little you know about the telecoms. You can't hold grudges against any of them. The more we have, the harder it is for them all (well, it's only 4 now) to collude. You need Sprint more than you could possibly know.

I need Sprint has much, as I need you, and that would be ZERO, I pay AT&T over $303.00 a month and I would gladly pay them a THOUSAND a month before I would pay Sprint $0.01 a year. And what I pay AT&T a month is less then a day's pay for me.
Sprint was negotiating to buy T-Mobile but AT&T also was negotiating with T-Mobile, and that's why Sprint is pissed, learn to comprehind what you are reading dude.
post #14 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by eacumm View Post

I need Sprint has much, as I need you, and that would be ZERO, I pay AT&T over $303.00 a month and I would gladly pay them a THOUSAND a month before I would pay Sprint $0.01 a year.

You clearly have some sort of unsubstantiated vendetta against Sprint.

Or you can't see past your own choices to know why we need every telecom we can get.

Quote:
And what I pay AT&T a month is less then a day's pay for me.

Mattering in what way?

Quote:
Sprint was negotiating to buy T-Mobile but AT&T also was negotiating with T-Mobile, and that's why Sprint is pissed, learn to comprehind what you are reading dude.

Yeah, that's the reason.

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post #15 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

You clearly have some sort of unsubstantiated vendetta against Sprint.

Or you can't see past your own choices to know why we need every telecom we can get.



Mattering in what way?



Yeah, that's the reason.

I have had many Cell Providers (Cellular One, Verizon, Sprint, GTE) and for the last 5 years AT&T and so far they are the best, So you know why I hate Sprint so much is they continuously lied to me and had the worst service of all, they always overcharged me on almost every bill for five years, I had to call them almost every month and argue for 45 minutes to over an hour to remove the amount over billed, now you see why I hate Sprint + the CEO is a cry baby.
post #16 of 35
In my own personal opinion, Sprint is just being a big baby because they're losing customers to carriers that have the iPhone. It appears to me that Sprint was all joys when they thought they were going to be the next carrier to have the iPhone, but when T-Mobile got in the picture Sprint felt they were going to have to share the spotlight. All my friends that have Sprint have already expressed interest in getting the iPhone should Sprint get it.

The funny thing here is that I don't really see very many posts from T-Mobile users. Everyone that is pouting about the merger doesn't understand that AT&T's acquisition of T-Mobile will benefit both T-Mobile and AT&T users by expanding T-Mobiles coverage area and getting the iPhone, and AT&T users getting a better 4G network.

The whole reason Apple chose AT&T as it's first, and an exclusive carrier, was because AT&T could afford the gamble and AT&T was GSM allowing Apple to create the iPhone to support more global carriers. CDMA carriers was an after-thought for Apple once they realized they could increase their profits.

Sprint should stop their whining and focus on staying ahead of US Cellular before they fall behind yet another wireless carrier.

On a side note: Droid has become an average OS for mobile phones just like MS Windows became the average OS for bulky grey boxes that sound like leaf blowers. Droid is the affordable option for people who want a cheap smartphone. People will always take issue with Apple because they build their own products and supply it with their own OS/iOS which is different than having 10 zillion computer companies building less than crappy computers and using a MS OS which in-turn makes people think MS has a crappy OS but ultimately it's the boxes that aren't up to spec. This is where Apple wins the global prize for making reliable computers, cellphones and tablets. Should Apple get into the TV business and manufacture a screen larger than 40 inches, I'll be standing in line at Apple for that too.

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post #17 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzmaster View Post

Count me as one who can say it with a straight face. First, explain how having T-Mobile has created competition. Most who are against this deal keep saying that the big players run the market, so how does T-mobile help?

Also, if T-Mobile is not merged there is a strong possibility that they will go away. How does that figure into your plan?

It is called the free market, get used to it.

YOU ARE AN IDIOT if you believe that the customers will be served in a positive manner by AT&T once it become the ONLY national GSM provider in the U.S. It is a free market, but our government also has laws to protect its citizens when the free market is abused in a way to take advantage of people.
post #18 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by lamewing View Post

YOU ARE AN IDIOT if you believe that the customers will be served in a positive manner by AT&T once it become the ONLY national GSM provider in the U.S. It is a free market, but our government also has laws to protect its citizens when the free market is abused in a way to take advantage of people.

What a nice way of respecting another's opinion...YOU DON'T NEED TO SCREAM AND CALL PEOPLE IDIOTS!
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post #19 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticalOS View Post

AT&T whether you're on their network or not is right about one of biggest things with carriors. the US infastructure is WAY behind EU. i don't even have 3G where i'm at yet, and other countries have almost full nationwide 4G. This merger would help millions if AT&T follows through on their promise to use the 4G tech from tmobile to expand their network. even if you're on a competing carrior. cuase lets phase it, roaming is a big part of of our service. Hell when i had sprint as a service, i spent more time on other carriors towers roaming then i did on sprints weaker coverage. AT&T and verizon own most of the towers in the country. Whether you are with them or not, you have to realize that their networks are the foundation of our mobile infratructure, so upgrading that infrastructure is in the interest of EVERYONE. THAT is what AT&T is saying.

I live in the EU and I can tell you for sure my country does not have "full nationwide 4G". I also regularly drop into GPRS because there is no 3G signal. On lots of different networks this happens.
post #20 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticalOS View Post

the US infastructure is WAY behind EU.

The United States also has the problem of being over twice the size of the EU. \

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post #21 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by neiltc13 View Post

I live in the EU and I can tell you for sure my country does not have "full nationwide 4G". I also regularly drop into GPRS because there is no 3G signal. On lots of different networks this happens.

Heh yeah, those EU carriers must feel pretty dumb investing in full nationwide 4G considering almost none of their customers have 4G phones! The grass is always greener. From the Euros I know, they are pretty miserable with the effort they have to go through to use their phone over an area larger than even an average US state. Swapping SIM cards, paying different fees depending on who they call and what type of line it is, it's all a big pain. The US system has drawbacks as well, but I'll take expensive simplicity over slightly cheaper mass complexity any day.
post #22 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

The United States also has the problem of being over twice the size of the EU. \

And not getting bombed to oblivion every 40 or so years and having the 'opportunity' to start over their city planning and network infra.
post #23 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChristophB View Post

And not getting bombed to oblivion every 40 or so years and having the 'opportunity' to start over their city planning and network infra.

How many times in the last sixty years has Europe had to rebuild its telecommunications infrastructure (that didn't exist prior, I might add)?!

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post #24 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

How many times in the last sixty years has Europe had to rebuild its telecommunications infrastructure (that didn't exist prior, I might add)?!

I'll admit a bit of exaggeration. I was thinking about Frankfurt at that moment. I swear you could put a t-square on any street corner and it would show true. I loved the ISDN when I lived there, something I couldn't see possible in cities in the NE of the US for decades.
post #25 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post

How anyone can say this merger is good for consumers with a straight face is beyond me.

Keep in mind that Sprint tried to get T-Mobile themselves. So that takes the country down to 3 major players. How is that good for consumers. It's the same 'one less player to provide competition' as ATT and T-Mobile joining

Plus DTK is going to kill T-Mobile US if there's not a buyer so that's one less player.

In the end it seems like the issue is the customer contracts but how many does T-Mobile have. And if ATT says they just want the towers is there a way to give them that but not the subscribers. Set the change over for say 6 months ahead and notify all T-Mobile customers that they must switch by that time or they will have no service. Cut all ETFs to smooth the blow.

then each person can go to wherever they want.

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post #26 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


"We of course will vigorously contest this matter in court as AT&Ts merger with T-Mobile USA will: help solve our nations spectrum exhaust situation and improve wireless service for millions; allow AT&T to expand 4G LTE mobile broadband to another 55 million Americans, or 97% of the population; and result in billions of additional investment and tens of thousands of jobs, at a time when our nation needs them most."

I don't believe this part. I think if AT&T acquires T-Mobile, they will lay off thousands of employees, rather than hiring tens of thousands more. Maybe government regulators should hold AT&T to this statement as a condition of approving the merger. If they don't increase their employment by a certain number by a certain date, repossess the T-Mobile spectrum and auction it off to the other telecoms. Some requirements for service levels and lower cost plans would also be welcome.
post #27 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post

How anyone can say this merger is good for consumers with a straight face is beyond me.

As I wrote in another post, the ATT-TMobile deal will benefit the consumers by having a much better coverage, and a better service, also, competing with Verizon and Sprint eventually will create better deals for the customer, it is a win win situation for t-mobile, a merger or eventually it may disappear, leaving just a fertile ground for another bidding war for t-mobile patents, equipment and customers.

I am all for the merger...

George
post #28 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalpen View Post

I'm totally behind AT&T buying T-Mobile and improving and increasing my whole family's and 99% of my friends service.

The government should stay the hell out of my personal life which includes my cell/mobile service.

Just one question: Why on earth would AT&T improve their coverage and capacity once they buy out one of their competition? It actually decreases their incentives to do so.

I don't see any incentive for AT&T to a) improve coverage b) improve speeds c) lower prices once there is LESS competition in the market. If AT&T were an idealist company, that wanted to offer best coverage and speed at lowest possible price it would happen, but (correct me if I'm wrong), AT&T is a business whose main goal is to make money hand over fist.

Remember, that a completely free (i.e. unregulated) market is bad for the consumer in areas where a few big companies can dictate the access to a limited resource (electricity, food, radio spectrum etc.).

Regs, Jarkko
post #29 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

The United States also has the problem of being over twice the size of the EU. \

How about service availability and quality in comparably populated areas? East coast, west coast, the lakes?

And there are areas in Europe with low population densities and hostile terrain. Take a look at the Nordics (esp. Norway). Would that be comparable then?

Regs, Jarkko
post #30 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzmaster View Post

Count me as one who can say it with a straight face. First, explain how having T-Mobile has created competition. Most who are against this deal keep saying that the big players run the market, so how does T-mobile help?

Also, if T-Mobile is not merged there is a strong possibility that they will go away. How does that figure into your plan?

It is called the free market, get used to it.

The thing I (and maybe other people as well) like about T-mobile is their prepaid plans. No other carrier in the US can provide data/voice/text for the prices they offer. Just the other day I tried to activate my factory unlocked iPhone on an AT&T prepaid plan. We got all the way to the last step, when they told me that they don't allow iPhones to be used with a prepaid plan. They went on to offer me a 2 year contract plan that would have cost me over twice as much. Without the competition, dumb rules like this can perpetuate.

AT&T wants T-Mobile for the frequencies. With them, they can ensure less competition.

And for the record, I do own AT&T stock!
post #31 of 35
Wow, from the sounds of it there are quite a few AT&T employees or shareholders here.

I'm all for the free market until the players in that free market start using abusive business practices, like trying to eliminate competition by any means necessary.

As a former AT&T customer and current T-Mobile customer I think the whole thing is hilarious. I get far better service now and prices AT&T just can't meet. I've had so many bad experiences with AT&T in the past it's laughable. If this goes through things will only get worse for consumers.
post #32 of 35
The problem with your free market theory is it is false. There is government interference in every area of the mix. AT&T relied on government tax rebatements and other freebies to acquire its infrastructure. Moreover, AT&T is relying on a commodity it 1) did not create, and 2) does not own. The public owns the airwaves, hence the government license. The government created the Internet, and released it to the public to use. If your free market theory was correct, anybody with some dough could become a carrier. The fact is, however, that isn't possible because of government regulation that has already delegated most of the spectrum to certain players.

T-Mobile has created competition because it puts pressure on AT&T and Verizon to keep things somewhat honest in terms of pricing. If either got to out of control, people like myself, would switch to T-Mobile. T-Mobile has over 30 million customers. If it had the iPhone, it would be more. That is according to T-Mobile itself.

As far as going away goes. How is a company making billions in profit a year going to go away? Would you give up close to six billion in profit? No way. Neither would T-Mobile. The only reason T-Mobile is up for sale is because AT&T is over paying.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzmaster View Post

Count me as one who can say it with a straight face. First, explain how having T-Mobile has created competition. Most who are against this deal keep saying that the big players run the market, so how does T-mobile help?

Also, if T-Mobile is not merged there is a strong possibility that they will go away. How does that figure into your plan?

It is called the free market, get used to it.
post #33 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by bucci View Post

The thing I (and maybe other people as well) like about T-mobile is their prepaid plans. No other carrier in the US can provide data/voice/text for the prices they offer. Just the other day I tried to activate my factory unlocked iPhone on an AT&T prepaid plan. We got all the way to the last step, when they told me that they don't allow iPhones to be used with a prepaid plan. They went on to offer me a 2 year contract plan that would have cost me over twice as much. Without the competition, dumb rules like this can perpetuate.

AT&T wants T-Mobile for the frequencies. With them, they can ensure less competition.

And for the record, I do own AT&T stock!

Finally someone with some sanity.

AT&T is trying to buy a company for 39+ billion to do what it could do to it's own network with only a 6 billion investment. Experts have already gone on record with the FCC testifying to this. Wake up people!

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post #34 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AHrubik View Post

Finally someone with some sanity.

AT&T is trying to buy a company for 39+ billion to do what it could do to it's own network with only a 6 billion investment. Experts have already gone on record with the FCC testifying to this. Wake up people!

Just to understand, you are referring to infrastructure correct? Because I have not seen anyone present a plan that shows how AT&T would obtain those customers as well.

It cracks me up reading people on this board try to defend not allowing this merger. Some time ago the Pharmacy that my wife works at was acquired by a national chain. The national chain did that to acquire the customers.

This is no different than what AT&T is going to do here. They will purchase T-Mobile and acquire all of T-Mobiles assets, debt, and customers. Some customers will leave, but the vast majority will stay.
post #35 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by TBell View Post

The problem with your free market theory is it is false. There is government interference in every area of the mix. AT&T relied on government tax rebatements and other freebies to acquire its infrastructure. Moreover, AT&T is relying on a commodity it 1) did not create, and 2) does not own. The public owns the airwaves, hence the government license. The government created the Internet, and released it to the public to use. If your free market theory was correct, anybody with some dough could become a carrier. The fact is, however, that isn't possible because of government regulation that has already delegated most of the spectrum to certain players.

T-Mobile has created competition because it puts pressure on AT&T and Verizon to keep things somewhat honest in terms of pricing. If either got to out of control, people like myself, would switch to T-Mobile. T-Mobile has over 30 million customers. If it had the iPhone, it would be more. That is according to T-Mobile itself.

As far as going away goes. How is a company making billions in profit a year going to go away? Would you give up close to six billion in profit? No way. Neither would T-Mobile. The only reason T-Mobile is up for sale is because AT&T is over paying.

Would you please explain how T-Mobile has created pressure on Verizon and AT&T? According to many here, neither AT&T nor Verizon have been forced by competition to offer competitive pre-paid plans for example. So exactly how has T-Mobile created competition in this market.

Second, if T-Mobile were doing such a great job, you would be on their network now. Same for many of the people on this board. Of course we all know that they are not truly competitive and will never be given the current direction of their parent company.

Lastly, you might want to dig into the corporate structure more. It has been widely documented that the parent company does not want to invest anymore into T-Mobile since it continues to lose customers and underperform. Here is an article from before the merger talks.http://www.engadget.com/2010/02/04/d...e-usa-spinoff/
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