As if AT&T wasn’t content enough with trying to buy pretty much everyone, now the rumors are they might be considering buying DirecTV. What chance would an acquisition like that have? Well, one just needs to look back at some of the groundwork done by the band of Merry Men at the FCC. In 2010, the FCC wrote a paper titled, “The Broadband Availability Gap” (OBI Technical Paper No. 1). One interesting find was that there were 7 million housing units underserved with broadband, meaning they didn’t meet the minimum requirements laid out by the FCC (4Mbps download and 1Mbps upload). So, for those areas, satellite was considered an excellent choice. If you think about it, according to the FCC, offering more satellite broadband at the newer improved data rates is a “good thing.”
Now AT&T has been selling off all its fixed line assets in many of these markets where satellite is considered a “good thing.” With one acquisition, AT&T would go back to serving those very same markets. Now working with DirecTV wouldn’t be something new for AT&T since they already resell satellite services in some areas. What’s interesting is AT&T’s market could expand into areas they had left previously to compete with the local fixed line providers that took over – competing over the very same fixed line assets AT&T (or SBC in many cases) built! A bit ironic, but such is the way in telecom.