by Marguerite Reardon January 5, 2017 6:06 PM PST @maggie_reardon
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T-Mobile's bombastic CEO, John Legere, brought out his crystal ball to offer some bold predictions for the wireless industry in 2017.
Speaking at the company's CES press conference in Las Vegas on Thursday, Legere rattled off eight possibilities for 2017. These predictions include everything from big cable companies entering and quickly exiting the wireless market to the unseating of three of the nation's four major wireless carrier CEOs.
Here's a full list of what Legere sees for the coming year.1. Cable companies will get their "asses kicked" in wireless, and retreat by 2018
Cable giants Comcast and Charter Communications are expected to introduce their own wireless services by mid-2017 that combine their own Wi-Fi networks with cellular service from established cellular phone companies, like Verizon. Legere promised T-Mobile won't strike any deals with cable operators, and he predicts that by CES 2018 the cable giants will give up on their wireless experiment and be in "full retreat."
Comcast declined to comment. Charter wasn't available for comment.2. A big competitor is coming to wireless, and it's likely Google
Legere thinks a big internet company like Amazon, Facebook or most likely Google will enter the mobile market to compete against the four wireless carriers. Of course, Google is already in the wireless business with its own Wi-Fi first service, Project Fi. But Legere expects the company to make a bigger play to compete with the major operators. Still, Legere isn't worried about the competition and says T-Mobile will "clean their clocks" like it's done with everyone else.3. Mobile will eat TV
Legere said mobile is the future. And he predicts that more than half of all television shows will be viewed on mobile devices by the end of the year.4. Dish Network will be dead
Speculation has swirled around Dish Network for years as the satellite TV provider has tried to figure out what to do with its pile of wireless spectrum licenses. But Legere said that the company has missed its opportunity to enter the wireless industry, and will likely be scooped up by another company.
The outspoken executive stops by CNET to talk about unlimited data and share his thoughts on Google and cable companies entering the wireless business.by Roger Cheng
5. T-Mobile will be first with Gigabit LTE
While AT&T and Verizon pay a lot of lip service to next-generation 5G wireless service, Legere said T-Mobile will beat them to the punch when it comes to offering 1 gigabit-per-second downloads over 4G LTE.6. Legere's "Slow Cooker Sunday" Facebook Live segments will surpass major cable networks' viewership
Legere said T-Mobile will continue to be a powerful force on social media. And he predicts his Facebook Live segments, that feature him preparing Sunday dinner in his slow cooker, will get more than 1 million viewers this year, gaining him more viewers than channels like MTV, Comedy Central and the Food Network.7. There will be a CEO shakeup -- but not at T-Mobile
Legere didn't name names, but he predicted CEOs at his three major rivals may be looking for new work by the end of 2017 as they're shuffled out of jobs.8. Comcast and Verizon will consider combining into Vericast or Comizon
Legere said he expects Comcast and Verizon to announce a merger to combine their "eroding legacy businesses," but he called the resulting company "the ultimate evil corporation of all time."
Legere also said he was "highly optimistic" about T-Mobile's prospects under a Donald Trump presidency. It's widely believed that President-elect Trump will appoint a chairman to the Federal Communications Commission that will be much friendlier to big broadband and wireless mergers and will dismantle regulations like net neutrality, which the industry says stifles investment.
When asked about whether T-Mobile would be open to a possible merger with Softbank, the Japanese wireless provider that owns a majority stake in Sprint, Legere said it was a "potential outcome."
Neither Verizon and Comcast declined to comment.