Businessweek had a chat recently with AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson, and he told them that the pending merger with T-Mobile would have the intended effect of improving service and capacity on the networks for all of AT&T's devices, including, of course, the iPhone. "Virtually on the day you close the deal, getting a 30 percent lift in capacity in New York City: that's a significant improvement in call quality and data throughput," he said. That's a nice big promise to make -- something that will be easy to check up on the day the merger gets closed.
Stephenson also speaks to the merger's opposition, saying that the cell phone service providing market is plenty intense. "It is intense before we do this transaction, it will be intense after we do this transaction." Stephenson also suggested that the deal might lower costs for AT&T customers overseas (since potentially, the international arm of T-Mobile would be ready to do deals with the US arm that AT&T will own). He's obviously got some good reasons for the merger, but then again, he stands to make plenty of money if it's approved. If the deal does go through, AT&T has said it expects to finish everything within a year from now.