A couple of days ago it was reported that AT&T, the nation’s second-largest wireless carrier may be preparing to accept the rules of the FCC’s net neutrality regulations set forth earlier in the year. AT&T has been heavily opposed to the new rules and regulations approved by the FCC, but it’s likely that they may end up agreeing to the terms if they want the FCC to approve their deal to buy out DirecTV, which the FCC is reported to be likely to request. Reports today state that the FCC regulators and AT&T/DirecTV executives met Thursday, June 4th to discuss the terms of the acquisition and what would potentially be needed if it were to be approved.
The merger is expected to happen in the very near future which makes this meeting an understandable one. Talks were reportedly held at the headquarters of the Federal Communications Commission where the FCC regulators likely went over their terms and conditions that they would require AT&T to meet in order for the make the merger approval, and according to the unnamed sources the FCC’s requests aren’t going to require anything that would be too difficult of a task for AT&T to abide by, although there are no specific confirmed details as to what the FCC’s conditions are at this time.
AT&T officially announced their plans to buy out DirecTV more than 12 months ago, which is a long time to wait for a response from the FCC for approval but AT&T has arguably seen less push back from regulators than when they announced their plans to purchase T-Mobile years ago. Interestingly enough, many thought that because AT&T’s proposed deal with DirecTV is similar to the deal between Comcast and Time Warner which was recently denied, that AT&T’s deal would see the same fate. That obviously hasn’t been the case even if the entire process has been a long one. Speculations are that the approval is close at hand, and all that may be standing between AT&T and the approval of their new found acquisition is agreeing to the FCC’s terms on Net Neutrality.