BT's takeover of EE: What it means for you

Following a six-month probe, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has finally cleared BT's takeover of EE, thus bringing in nearly 35 million fixed broadband, TV and direct mobile subscribers in the country under the same fold.

BT's take-over of EE also takes place at a time when O2 and Three are planning to merge and thus leave a bulk of the country's entire mobile network in the hands of three gigantic operators.

Even though BT and EE are performing well and delivering the best value in terms of broadband and cellular technologies, the merger has more to it than it meets the eye. Here's a look at what the merger will mean to how and how it will affect your existing contracts.

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Say goodbye to not-spots

Thanks to the merger, BT is splurging a tonne of investment which could lead EE to roll over not-spots and non-4G covered areas like smaller towns and villages in the coming years and also to offer contracts with substantial minutes and data offering.

If this happens, you won't need to worry about not receiving 4G signals or encountering not-spots while you travel.

Enjoy 'Quad play of services'

Thanks to the merger, BT will now be able to offer broadband, mobile, phone and pay TV as part of a complete package. BT is also planning on offering a combination of 4G, Wi-Fi and wired broadband to consumers in the coming years, which it says will be a convergence of fixed-line and mobile broadband services.

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You won't be harmed

A major concern of rival network operators was that the merger will lead to escalating costs of contracts and that it could result in BT attempting to prioritise its own retail divisions at the cost of less-wealthy rivals. However, the CMA sought to calm their nerves, saying that the deal wasn't likely to cause any harm to customers or to the competition.

"Having considered all the evidence, the group does not provisionally believe that, in a dynamic and evolving sector, it is more likely than not that BT/EE will be able to use its position to damage competition or the interests of consumers," said John Wotton, chair of the CMA inquiry, relying on the fact that both BT and EE are engaged in separate businesses with no strategic overlaps in their areas.

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BT has welcomed the CMA's decision to approve the acquisition, enabling it to put in place its plans of offering a combination of services to consumers in the coming days.

“The combined BT and EE will be a digital champion for the UK, providing high levels of investment and driving innovation in a highly competitive market. I have no doubt that consumers, businesses and communities will benefit as we combine the power of fibre broadband with the convenience of leading edge mobile services. I look forward to welcoming EE into the BT family,” said Gavin Patterson, Chief Executive at BT.

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