US wireless carriers AT&T and T-Mobile have withdrawn their merger application filed with the Federal Communications Commission, giving an indication that AT&T has given up for now.
AT&T had caused a stir by announcing that it intends to acquire T-Mobile, the fourth largest mobile phone carrier in the US, for $38 billion.
The deal was opposed by several AT&T rivals and consumer groups, which claimed that the deal will have adverse impact on competition, result in massive job cuts and raise pricing for consumers.
The company's decision to withdraw the merger application comes after AT&T and T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom released a statement saying that they planned to pursue the acquisition. However, AT&T also said that it is prepared to pay DT $4 billion as a break-up fee if the acquisition does not happen.
The FCC recently announced that the acquisition is not in the best interests of the public and market competition in general, paving way for a lawsuit by the Justice department.
AT&T said in a statement that it was withdrawing the application as of now because it wanted to focus entirely on the anti-trust lawsuit filed by the US Justice Department reports The Washington Post (opens in new tab).
"As soon as practical, AT&T Inc. and Deutsche Telekom AG intend to seek the necessary FCC approval," AT&T said.