Editor's note: AT&T's acquisition of DirecTV, which was approved today by the FCC, will create the country's largest provider of cable or satellite TV, with 26.4 million cable and satellite TV subscribers. - Tom
AT&T Inc. is an American multinational telecommunications corporation, headquartered at Whitacre Tower in downtown Dallas, Texas. AT&T is the second largest provider of mobile telephone and the largest provider of fixed telephone in the United States, and also provides broadband subscription television services. AT&T is the third-largest company in Texas (the largest non-oil company, behind only ExxonMobil and ConocoPhillips, and also the largest Dallas company). As of May 2014, AT&T is the 23rd-largest company in the world as measured by a composite of revenues, profits, assets and market value, and the 16th-largest non-oil company. As of 2015, it is also the 20th-largest mobile telecom operator in the world, with over 123.9 million mobile customers.
AT&T Inc. began its existence as Southwestern Bell Corporation, one of seven Regional Bell Operating Companies (RBOC's) created in 1983 in the divestiture of the American Telephone and Telegraph Company (founded 1885, later AT&T Corp.) following the 1982 United States v. AT&T antitrust lawsuit. Southwestern Bell changed its name to SBC Communications Inc. in 1995. In 2005, SBC purchased former parent AT&T Corp. and took on its branding, with the merged entity naming itself AT&T Inc. and using the iconic AT&T Corp. logo and stock-trading symbol.
The current AT&T reconstitutes much of the former Bell System and includes ten of the original 22 Bell Operating Companies, along with the original long distance division.
As of July 24, 2015, AT&T became the largest pay-TV provider with AT&T U-Verse and DirecTV combined. Comcast fell to second place with 22 million after AT&T completed its acquisition of DirecTV.