large image

Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Worrying merger of two U.S. cable giants isn’t happening anymore

U.S. TV and internet giant Comcast has officially dropped plans to purchase rival company Time Warner Cable, following regulatory hold ups.

Comcast had agreed a $45 billion buyout, but the Federal Communications Commission in the U.S. had vigorously probed the deal over fears it may stifle competition in the marketplace.

The deal would have given the combined companies a 30 per cent share of the pay TV market and 40 per cent of all high speed internet connections.

Regulators in the States had expressed concern a Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger would have given the company far too much power and influence.

The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission Tom Wheeler said (via Reuters) it would have posed an ”unacceptable risk to competition and innovation.”

The U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said ditching the deal was “the best outcome for American consumers.”

Comcast has vowed to “move on,” but the decision opens the door for a smaller company to make a run at Time Warner Cable. However, it seems certain U.S. regulators are going to be all over any proposed deal.

Read more: Net Neutrality Explained: What is it and how will it affect you?

The chances of an agreement being rubber stamped seemed to drop as the debate over net neutrality became prominent in the United States.

Comcast had tried to swing regulators by claiming it didn’t compete with Time Warner in the same geographic areas, so wouldn’t be harming competition, but that argument seemed to backfire.

The irrepressible John Oliver compared Comcast to a drug cartel for its plans to ‘mark out territory’ during a lengthy segment on his HBO show last year, which you can see below from about 7 minutes in.

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2004, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have millions of users a month from around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.