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AT&T Inc. (T)

  • Fri, May 15, 7:07 PM
    • Broadband subscribership grew by nearly 1.2M in Q1, according to a Leichtman Research Group report examining the top 17 ISPs.
    • Cable made up 86% of that growth; Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA), the nation's largest MVPD, added 407K users by itself. It's the first quarter since Q1 2008 where cable logged more than 1M net broadband adds, says Bruce Leichtman.
    • Overall, leading ISPs now boast 88.5M subscribers, cable with 53M of those.
    • Not coincidentally, cable's recently had momentum on the network-investment front, with firms like Comcast and CenturyLink (NYSE:CTL) investing in their gigabit broadband installations.
    • Related companies: VZ, T, CMCSA, CHTR, TWC, CVC, CTL, FTR, WIN, FRP, CBB
    • Previously: A hint for Comcast's 2-Gig pricing? (May. 11 2015)
    • Previously: Comcast call: Now more broadband company than cableco (May. 04 2015)
    | Fri, May 15, 7:07 PM | 4 Comments
  • Fri, May 15, 6:44 PM
    | Fri, May 15, 6:44 PM | 14 Comments
  • Thu, May 14, 7:00 PM
    • Bigger set-asides of spectrum for Sprint (NYSE:S) and T-Mobile (NYSE:TMUS) would risk ruining the upcoming broadcast incentive auction, says Recon Analytics' Roger Entner.
    • Smaller competitors have asked for rules that limit how much spectrum giants AT&T (NYSE:T) and Verizon (NYSE:VZ) could bid in, but that risks ire from television broadcasters who will be on the receiving end of the bids, he says: "The fewer the restrictions, the smaller the set-asides, the more revenue will be generated during the auction."
    • T-Mobile and Sprint have enough spectrum, so he suggests a better idea is a 20 MHz set-aside for small rural operators. The FCC is reserving 30 MHz of an expected 70-80 MHz; opponents want a 40 MHz set-aside.
    | Thu, May 14, 7:00 PM | 15 Comments
  • Wed, May 13, 11:37 PM
    • Cox Communications has sued AT&T (NYSE:T), saying its U-verse TV service is infringing on three Cox patents.
    • The patents in question cover a "Method and System for Multicast Using Multiple Transport Streams," "Generating a personalized video mosaic in a cable services network," and "Access system and method for providing interactive access to an information source through a television distribution system."
    • Monetary damages sought are unspecified, though the suit does seek a permanent injunction from "practicing or providing systems or services" that use the patented work.
    • Among MSOs (multiple-system operators of TV systems), U-verse is the fifth-largest, with some 6M subscribers, while Cox is seventh, with about 4.54M subscribers.
    | Wed, May 13, 11:37 PM | 5 Comments
  • Wed, May 13, 6:50 PM
    • Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH) and Cogent Communications (NASDAQ:CCOI), along with other advocacy groups, have spelled out the conditions they'd like to see for a successful AT&T (NYSE:T) purchase of DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV).
    • Opponents to the deal met with FCC staffers last week; AT&T is expected to meet with deal reviewers in the coming days, and hopes to close the deal by the end of June.
    • Dish, Cogent and other critics asked that AT&T promise to sell Internet as a standalone service outside of its bundles at a reasonable price, and they asked the FCC to make AT&T comply with stricter net neutrality provisions for seven years, regardless of how AT&T's suit against the rules comes out.
    • Also requested: that AT&T include all video in any data caps, and restrictions on how AT&T handles interconnect traffic -- which particularly affects Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) and Dish's new Sling TV streaming service, key competition for DirecTV service.
    • Previously: Cogent joins Netflix in demanding conditions for AT&T/DirecTV combo (May. 05 2015)
    • Previously: Netflix to FCC: Reject AT&T/DirecTV merger (May. 05 2015)
    | Wed, May 13, 6:50 PM | 9 Comments
  • Wed, May 13, 5:13 PM
    • As promised, AT&T (NYSE:T) and friends have taken their request for a stay of FCC net neutrality regulations to federal court.
    • The regulations are set to take effect June 12, and AT&T -- joined by CenturyLink (NYSE:CTL), the NCTA, wireless association CTIA, the American Cable Association, US Telecom and the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association -- is pressing to hold them until lengthy lawsuits play out.
    • The companies and groups say their issue is with the Title II classification for broadband (exposing it to utility-like regulation); they don't have any problem with prohibitions on blocking or throttling traffic or setting priority delivery.
    • Previously: FCC denies requests to stay its net neutrality ruling (May. 08 2015)
    | Wed, May 13, 5:13 PM | 2 Comments
  • Wed, May 13, 12:56 PM
    • AT&T (T +0.9%) says it's come to tentative terms on wireline contract negotiations with the Communications Workers of America.
    • The deal would cover almost 17,000 workers, 12,000 of them with AT&T Midwest (in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin) and another 4,500 with AT&T Corp.
    • Union membership will consider ratification in coming days.
    | Wed, May 13, 12:56 PM | 8 Comments
  • Wed, May 13, 12:31 PM
    • AT&T (T +1.1%) announces it's made a deal to offer Hulu subscription video streaming to its customers via websites and mobile devices, and that the two are also exploring a Hulu app for TV.
    • The offering will come later this year and let AT&T customers browse and choose Hulu selections on demand. The deal builds on a current contract that AT&T has with Hulu -- co-owned by NBCUniversal, Disney and Fox (CMCSA, DIS, FOXA) -- for its free content.
    • Last month, Cablevision became the first pay-TV provider to distribute Hulu's service to its set-top customers.
    | Wed, May 13, 12:31 PM | 7 Comments
  • Mon, May 11, 8:53 PM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) has urged the FCC to put a cap on wireless spectrum-auction bidding credits of $10M for designated entities ((DEs)), the companies funded by bigger firms that can bid on their behalf and earn small-business credits.
    • Competitors have been harshly competitive of Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH), who used two DEs in the AWS-3 auction to apply for $3B in bidding credits, effectively winning $13.3B in spectrum for just $10B in bids. The FCC is scrutinizing those credits, and a $10M cap would have effectively invalidated Dish's strategy.
    • Meanwhile, the FCC is reportedly circulating a draft order for the 2016 broadcast incentive auction that is almost unchanged from the original, despite entreaties from various firms/groups (also including Verizon (NYSE:VZ)) for changes. The draft is scheduled to be released next month.
    • Previously: WSJ: FCC may reject $3.3B Dish Network spectrum discount (Apr. 27 2015)
    • Previously: Big bidders receive spectrum from FCC auction; Dish waiting (Apr. 10 2015)
    | Mon, May 11, 8:53 PM | 11 Comments
  • Fri, May 8, 8:46 PM
    • Late today, the FCC denied requests for staying its Title II reclassification decision, filed by industry players including cable lobbies NCTA and ACA, as well as wireless trade group CTIA, USTelecom, the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association, AT&T (NYSE:T) and CenturyLink (NYSE:CTL).
    • Cogent Communications (NASDAQ:CCOI) had filed in opposition to those stay requests.
    • The next move is likely to federal court, where NCTA and ACA have already indicated they intend to keep pursuing a stop to the orders. (via Broadcasting & Cable)
    | Fri, May 8, 8:46 PM | 13 Comments
  • Fri, May 8, 11:37 AM
    • A suit that might have slowed down progress on the review of AT&T's (NYSE:T) purchase of DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV) has wrapped, with the court throwing out the FCC's order for media companies to disclose their pay-TV programming contracts.
    • The agency had asked for the disclosures in connection with their reviews of that deal and of Comcast's now-failed bid for Time Warner Cable, but major content companies including CBS, Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS), Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA) and Viacom (VIA, VIAB) argued the results would cause "irreparable harm" to their negotiating strategies.
    • The FCC's order was found "substantially and procedurally flawed." The resolution removes yet another hurdle between AT&T and DirecTV.
    • Previously: With Comcast-TWC done, federal suit likely focuses on AT&T-DirecTV (Apr. 24 2015)
    | Fri, May 8, 11:37 AM | 9 Comments
  • Tue, May 5, 11:47 PM
    • Cogent Communications (NASDAQ:CCOI) joined Netflix today in calling for conditions on the proposed merger of AT&T (NYSE:T) and DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV).
    • Data carriers like Cogent (along with firms like Netflix) are focused on interchange issues, the fees that a broadband behemoth could collect for accepting Internet traffic -- and their opposition, or the nature of it, could be good news for the deal, says industry analyst Craig Moffett.
    • The reason? The companies could be kingmakers by urging concessions, he says: They helped sink the Comcast-TWC deal, and now with AT&T/DirecTV, “two of the most ardent opponents are tacitly blessing the idea of the merger as long as there are appropriate conditions.”
    • The two say that a combined AT&T/DirecTV with no restrictions will have a bigger incentive to stymie streaming entertainment.
    | Tue, May 5, 11:47 PM | 1 Comment
  • Tue, May 5, 9:13 PM
    • DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV) -- down 1.7% today following this morning's earnings miss -- did have the benefit of adding 279K net new subscribers, including 60K in the U.S., running counter to old-line cablecos facing video subscriber losses.
    • The problem, the WSJ notes, is that those other companies like Comcast and Charter made up for it with broadband service -- and DirecTV doesn't offer that. And when the video numbers turn, DTV will start to suffer, especially if anything gets in the way of its tie-up with AT&T (NYSE:T).
    • During the earnings call today, CEO Michael White said the company has about 1M subs on its "skinny bundle" -- a $19.99/month package that goes up to $49.99 after a 24-month contract. The company introduced that package after Dish Network launched its $20/month Sling TV.
    • White says he'd think about skinny differently with a broadband component and notes DirecTV could technically offer over-the-top service through its set-top, and already does something like it with a Pandora app.
    • Previously: Netflix to FCC: Reject AT&T/DirecTV merger (May. 05 2015)
    | Tue, May 5, 9:13 PM | Comment!
  • Tue, May 5, 5:30 PM
  • Tue, May 5, 11:04 AM
    • Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) is pressing the FCC to reject the $48B merger of AT&T (NYSE:T) and DirecTV (NASDAQ:DTV), according to regulatory filings revealed today, on complaints about market power -- as the merger could "lead to its becoming the largest (Internet service provider) in the country as well" as becoming the biggest MVPD.
    • The remarks came as Netflix officials met with more than 20 FCC staff last week.
    • "Such market power creates new incentives and abilities to harm entities that AT&T perceives as competitive threats," Netflix reps said, "and will exacerbate the anticompetitive behavior in which AT&T has already engaged."
    • Netflix shares are up 3.8% today in the wake of BofA/Merrill Lynch's heavy upgrade; AT&T is down 1.2% and DirecTV is down 0.5%.
    | Tue, May 5, 11:04 AM | 31 Comments
  • Thu, Apr. 30, 5:31 PM
    • AT&T (NYSE:T) has wrapped its acquisition of Nextel Mexico from NII Holdings for $1.875B (less some $427M of adjustments including net debt).
    • Following its integration of Iusacell earlier this year, the company says it plans to create "the first-ever North American Mobile Service area, which will cover more than 400 million consumers and businesses in Mexico and the United States."
    • AT&T credited quick action by Mexico's post-reform telecom regulator in getting the deals through smoothly.
    • Thaddeus Arroyo, CEO of AT&T Mexico and Iusacell, will be in charge of the combination.
    • Previously: AT&T adds more unlimited calling to Mexico (Feb. 17 2015)
    • Previously: AT&T closes Iusacell deal, puts tech exec in charge (Jan. 16 2015)
    | Thu, Apr. 30, 5:31 PM | 21 Comments
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Company Description
AT&T Inc, through its subsidiaries and affiliates, provides wireless and wireline telecommunications services in the United States and internationally. The Company has three reportable segments: Wireless, Wireline, and Other.