Yes, that’s the rumor of the morning. According to the Wall Street Journal, Verizon Communications and Charter Communications are talking about some sort of deal. Of course, it’s just talk at the moment, and preliminary talk at that. The question is how seriously we should take the idea.
The combination of one the country’s largest incumbent telecommuncations and wireless operators with the second largest cable operators is something that I think would not even have been considered before Trump won the election. The prospect of such a deal winning regulatory approval under a Democratic administration would have been rather bleak. But under the new administration, it is perhaps not so clear.
Verizon is busy right now buying Yahoo! as it seeks more content to balance its wireless and FIOS businesses, although just what the various hacking revelations will mean for that deal also remains unclear. Meanwhile Charter has spent the last year integrating itself with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, the deal for which only closed last May.
If someone had said a few years ago that Verizon, Charter, Time Warner Cable, Bright house Networks, Yahoo, and AOL might soon all be combined into one entity, well let’s just say that they might not have been taken terribly seriously (or worse). But I still don’t believe it will actually happen.
Not yet anyway. Rather, I see this as perhaps a trial balloon by Verizon to see which way the wind is blowing for something like this.
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