Dallas AT&T; Inc. completed its $86 billion buyout of BellSouth Corp., the largest telecommunications takeover in U.S. history, shortly after the Federal Communications Commission unanimously approved the deal Friday.
The FCC action came one day after the company offered new concessions for consumers and competitors.
Attorneys for AT&T; and the two Democratic commissioners who had opposed the merger hammered out a compromise.
AT&T; promised to observe "network neutrality" - not to favor Internet content providers who pay the company more money.
The combination of San Antonio-based AT&T; and Atlanta-based BellSouth will have operations in 22 states.
Combined, the companies generate about $117 billion in revenue and operate 68.7 million local phone lines stretching coast to coast across the southern U.S., up through the Midwest and into the Northeast.
The buyout will also give AT&T; complete control over Cingular Wireless, the nation's largest wireless telecommunications provider, which it had jointly owned with BellSouth.