In order to get their purchase of DirecTV approved by federal regulators, AT&T has promised to extend its 1 Gbps FTTP service to “more E-rate eligible schools and libraries in its wireline footprint.”. AT&T has already “promised” the FCC that they would expand their fiber-based broadband service to all 12.5 million customers if their deal with DirecTV was approved.
So, at what point are people going to realize that the AT&T will likely do none of this? Sure, AT&T will connect some schools and libaries that likely are pre-wired for their fast service and issue 5,000,000 press releases about it. But does anyone expect AT&T to actually start wiring all schools in their “footprint” that are eligible to be upgraded? AT&T hasn’t even told the FCC or anyone what schools/libraries will be upgraded even though the list of eligible schools is there to see.
The reason why is because AT&T has no plans to actually expand their fiber service to anyone that isn’t already pre-wired for it. This allows AT&T to issue PR pieces about their “upgrades” which involve very little cost to AT&T.
Have you all seen AT&T’s past promises? AT&T has a very long history of lying about deployment numbers so that regulators believe already-planned deployments are only possible if AT&T’s latest and greatest deal is approved. As the Huffington Post points out, what AT&T is doing with the DirecTV deal is EXACTLY what they have done in the past with their previous big acquisitions.
By 2007, AT&T should have completed upgrading 100% of their 22 states to broadband, based on the AT&T-BellSouth merger. And in 2004, AT&T told the FCC that it would start deployment of 100 Mbps fiber-to-the-home services. But here’s the problem; the AT&T IP Transition information and the Direct TV merger press release exposes the fact that AT&T never completed the 100% broadband deployment to everyone, even with wireless — and it appears they may have committed perjury by telling the FCC that they had. – Huffington Post
AT&T has already promised regulators that they would have 100% of their footprint completed with high-speed broadband….several times in the past. So how can 15 million locations — at least 20% of all AT&T areas, not already have high speed broadband?
Then there is wireless. When AT&T was trying to acquire T-Mobile, they claimed that unless the merger was approved, they would not be able to cover 97% of the country with LTE coverage! Except, AT&T admitted in other documents that everything about that statement was laughably false. According to an AT&T confidential document, it would only cost AT&T just $3.8 billion to have 97% LTE coverage in the country.