tech stocks

Best Tech Stocks to Buy

Tech stocks are the most important sector of the stock market.

These companies' innovations create services and products integral to daily life and are upending traditional industries and business models. Investors craving the explosive growth potential of these innovations can look no further than the best tech stocks to buy now.

Technology stocks come in all shapes and sizes, from well-known global enterprises such as Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN), Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB), and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) to smaller startups just making their IPOs that could potentially offer massive returns to early investors.

That also means the way we evaluate tech stocks has to be different than the way we evaluate the rest of the stock market.

Tech investors look for growth. They want a company with a great idea and a management team committed to making it work. As Money Morning Defense and Tech Specialist Michael Robison puts it, "The road to wealth is paved with tech." And it doesn't matter if it's a startup going public or a tech megacap dominating its sector.

But that doesn't mean just any tech stock will see the sort of explosive growth investors want. Tech is extremely competitive, and only the best companies with the best ideas and best management hitting their stride at exactly the right time will make investors money.

That's why we've combed through the most promising tech stocks across the hottest trends in tech to find you stocks with real growth potential.

Here are our best tech stocks to buy today…

The Best Tech Stocks to Buy for 2022

A lot has happened in a few months’ time. We’re fighting off another pandemic wave, knee-deep in inflation and supply chain disruptions. Some tech stocks are even struggling with the broader market.

But that does not mean you won’t find good tech buys for the coming year. In fact, the current climate could put several tech stocks at a discount. That would make a broad market rise down the line even more profitable.

So, you want to invest in fast-growing technology company stocks. These companies  develop products and programs that could change the world in the blink of an eye.

To make sure you don't miss out on any of the fall's hottest stocks, we've got the best tech stocks to buy in 2022…

An Innovative Cybersecurity Stock to Buy Now

Thousands of communications satellites orbiting Earth are prime targets for hackers. The threat here can’t be overstated.

For example, almost every car, truck, train, plane, and ship in the world today uses GPS to track its location, keep to a schedule, and avoid obstacles. And NASA has been the target of more than 6,000 cyber incidents – with 1,785 of those attempted hacks last year alone.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg. Almost every company in the world now uses satellite communications, whether they know it or not.

That’s why Zscaler Inc.’s (NASDAQ: ZS) services are so crucial. The company runs over 150 data centers around the world, which together handle 150 billion transactions per day.

Google does a mere one-tenth that number.

Not only that, but Zscaler is directly at the forefront of securing the huge satellite communications market. It's built out this massive capacity to protect its more than 4,500 clients, which together have more than 20 million employees.

But Zscaler isn’t just a good story. The numbers are great, too.

Zscaler stock is up 341.5% over the last two years, beating out the S&P 500 by 563%.

And this innovator is still  growing.

The company's earnings per share soared 114% in Q3 2020, well above its three-year average of 90%.

The stock took a 15% dip from November 2021 to close the year. But that could be a discount opportunity, since Zscaler is just getting started.

A Back-End Tech Play to Power Your Portfolio

This leader in the $17.4 billion market for standby power gained more than 50% between April and November the last year. That beat the S&P 500 by an amazing 227%.

And that’s just the beginning…

Generac Holdings Inc. (NYSE: GNRC) is the first company to create a home standby generator and build an engine specifically for extreme weather. This is a huge market.

Take California, for instance.

California boasts a population of 39.7 million people. And yet in the world’s fifth-largest economy, only 1% of homes have standby power. And by the company’s own estimates, every additional 1% of the American standby power market it captures translates into a whopping $2.5 billion in sales.

That’s on top of the $2.5 billion in net sales this firm scored in 2020, 63% of which came from residential customers like you and me.

In an investor presentation released last month, this Washington state-based energy titan laid out a vision for its growth for years to come.

Between what the firm calls “Grid 2.0,” which will create opportunities in clean energy and grid services, the shift toward work-from-home corporate models, requiring those folks to have some means of backup power, and the ongoing 5G wireless update, this is a very savvy investment.

Generac can grow its main power business and also profit from alternative energy with a system all green homes and businesses will need – convenient and efficient storage.

The stock has beaten the broad market by as much as 227%, but it could rise even higher in 2022. Earnings could grow at a more conservative 24% a year, which means earnings should double in just three years.

That makes GNRC a great backend tech play to power your portfolio for many years to come.

The 5G Tech Stock to Buy Now

The rollout of 5G networks continues across the globe, and that is the technology development that could have the biggest impact on the world over the next few years. As we have seen in the pandemic, the faster the broadband speeds and the wider the bandwidths are, the better the world functions.

At the heart of the 5G revolution is Aviat Networks Inc. (NASDAQ: AVNW). Aviat sells a range of wireless networking products, solutions, and services in North America, Africa, the Middle East, Europe, Russia, Latin America, and the Asia Pacific.

Maybe that sounds boring, but what they really sell is all the technology that makes the internet work faster and more efficiently, which means the world works faster and more efficiently.

Aviat is the pure-play microwave solutions company for 5G networks. Microwave signals are faster than light through fiber and will be a huge part of major 5G networks.

There is another huge growth opportunity in front of Aviat Technologies right now. The Biden infrastructure plan calls for $100 billion to be spent getting high-speed broadband services to the rural parts of the nations. Aviat has been involved in rural broadband projects for years and stands ready to help build the future in those areas.

That same expertise can help bring the internet to emerging economies around the world, and Aviat expects to see growth opportunities from those markets as well.

Aviat is also the leader in using microwave technology for private markets for utilities, law enforcement, and government agencies.

Aviat has been a steady grower, and the company looks to accelerate that growth as 5G brings broadband to rural America.

The Best Tech Stock for the Chip Shortage

Another company that looks poised to blast off is an Israeli semiconductor equipment manufacturer called Camtek Ltd. (NASDAQ: CAMT). Camtek makes products that allow manufacturers to improve yields and drive down costs.

That's critically important right now as semiconductor companies scramble to produce enough chips to meet the demand. Between the pandemic shrinking production and the explosive demand as the global economy comes back to life, we see a shortage of semiconductors around the world. This has brought some industries like auto manufacturing to a standstill.

Manufacturers like Ford are closing plants while used car prices soar. There simply aren't enough new cars to keep up with demand. At the same time, tech firms like Apple are warning that their business could slow down thanks to the chip shortage.

Virtually every social, demographic, and economic trend will drive demand for semiconductors and semiconductor testing equipment like the products Camtek provides. We are moving from the growth of PCs and the internet as the big demand driver for the semiconductor industry into the age of big data.

Big data is smart homes.

Big data is 5G.

Big data is artificial intelligence.

Big data is electric vehicles and driverless cars.

Big data is smartphones.

And big data needs semiconductor chips.

Chip manufacturers need the products made by Camtek to produce the chips quickly, cheaply, and profitably.

Camtek has already been growing at a torrid pace. In the first quarter of 2021, revenues were up year over year by over 90%.

In its Q2 2021 earnings release, the company earned $67.5 million in revenue, an increase of 82% on a year-over-year basis. Camtek beat analyst expectations by 6.74% for earnings per share (EPS) and 5.31% for revenue and has a strong operating cash flow of $19.9 million.

Camtek has doubled revenue every four years.

Wall Street analysts are just discovering the stock and have been scrambling to keep up with Camtek's growth trajectory.

Institutions are starting to notice the stock too. Buyers include well-known growth stock investors like Ark Investments and Driehaus Capital.

The positive earnings surprises, analyst estimate increases, and institutional buying pressure can combine to send stocks dramatically higher very quickly.

The chip shortage is expected to continue into 2023, meaning chip makers will rely on Camtek. Coupled with long-term trends like Big Data, that spells growth for the company over the next two years and beyond.

The Best Tech Stock Right Now for Infrastructure

Bentley Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: BSY) sells software to the people that plan, design, and build infrastructure. These include engineers, architects, and construction firms. As money begins to flow into rebuilding infrastructure, there will be more demand for Bentley's software.

Its software can be used to design bridges, mines, dams, and factories. Architects can also use their products for site plans, rail network planning, and treatment plant analysis. Before the first shovel of dirt is turned in, the designers and builders can have the project all laid out using software from Bentley Systems.

Bentley's software creates digital workflow between architects, engineers, and construction companies both in the office and in the field to ensure projects run smoothly and according to plan.

A lot of new infrastructure projects will come online over the next few years, and that's going to create demand for the software sold by Bentley Systems.

As requested by the president, the infrastructure bill calls for billions of dollars to be spent in updating schools and expanding broadband access to everyone in the United States. That will create enormous demand for fiber optic products, and our next stock to own in May is going to be a huge beneficiary of that demand.

This Top Tech Stock Dominates Fiber Optics

Clearfield Inc. (NASDAQ: CLFD) sells pretty much everything you need to deploy a fiber network, including frames and cabinets, optical components, cable and drop assemblies, terminals and cabinets, and wall boxes.

Clearfield's customers are broadband service providers, including the large national carriers, local companies, utilities, and municipalities.

There were already huge opportunities for Clearfield from the rollout of 5G and the continued adoption of cloud computing and data centers. Add in government-mandated expansion and updates to the nation's fiber-optic grid, and business is about to go from good to great.

Halfway through 2021, the company's sales were up 45% year over year while the backlog of work rose by more than 100% compared to the first quarter of 2020. Gross profit margins climbed from 39% to 43.6%. As a result of the powerful sales increase combined with margin improvement, earnings exploded from just $0.05 last year to $0.27 this year.

That's year-over-year earnings growth of more than 400%.

The stock rose more than 200% in 2021, and it will climb even higher in 2022.

A Fintech Stock That Is Not Robinhood

The fintech sector is expected to be worth $309 billion next year. And while Robinhood stock makes headlines lately, there are plenty more growth opportunities in other emerging fintech stocks.

You may or may not know this one. But it’s certainly not getting the attention it should.

Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Shah Gilani recommends Dave.com as one of the top rising fintech stocks out there right now.

This company is not public yet. But it’s on the way to merging with VPC Impact Acquisition Holding III (NYSE: VPCC), which you can buy before the merger happens. VPC is a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) or “blank check company” that invests in promising startups like Dave.

And Dave is promising. The company offers banking accounts and debit cards with a new spin.

The company pitches itself as a “friend” that can rely on for a small loan when you want to avoid overdrawing your account. Overdraft fees can add up – they average $33.43 in the United States – so the demand is there.

You can link a Dave account to another checking account to bump up your checking account balance with a free advance “to cover upcoming expenses up to $100.”

This $4 billion startup will eventually be listed on the NYSE when the merger is complete. In the meantime, you can buy shares of VPCC and wait for the ticker to change and the value of the stock to soar.

How to Find the Best Tech Stocks to Buy Right Now

To help you find the best stocks to buy, Money Morning gives you insight into which stocks we see as good buys, which stocks should be avoided, and what news matters in the Dow Jones every day.

Growth and Momentum

The best tech stocks to buy now are often stocks with strong upward momentum. One big benefit of buying tech stocks is how much growth potential the sector offers. Some high growth stocks may not be profitable yet are difficult to evaluate using traditional metrics. That is why looking for tech stocks that have been moving higher can be a good indicator that more people want to buy them and that they're riding a trend. A good way to examine growth and momentum is by evaluating a key piece of technical analysis called the moving average.

• Moving Average – A stock's moving average (MA) is the average closing price over a certain time period, like 20 days, 50 days, or 200 days. It's used to get a baseline for where the stock is trading that removes any short-term fluctuations. When a stock is trading above its 20- or 50-day MA, it shows good upward momentum.

Fundamentals

Fundamentals are, simply put, data that can potentially impact the price of a company's stock. Factors included in a fundamental analysis of a company can include its management of capital, its cash flow, profit retention, funding for growth and research and development, and more.

The fundamentals of technology stocks are an important part of evaluating their potential. This is because well-established tech companies such as Google and Microsoft that boast solid fundamentals have also proven their ability to maintain leadership in their markets.

A valuable fundamental to consider is earnings per share:

• Earnings Per Share (EPS) Growth – Earnings per share refer to the company's profit divided by its outstanding shares. Strong growth in EPS means a bigger ROI. EPS growth of 25% or more over a 12-month period is a good sign.

Value

A successful track record isn't always an indicator that a company is offering one of the best tech stocks to buy now. In addition to looking at recent earnings, it's important to consider the stock's price-to-earnings ratio (P/E).

P/E compares the price of a share in a company to its earnings per share. A high P/E means that a stock's price is expensive compared to its earnings and is potentially overvalued.

A low P/E means that a stock is cheap compared to its earnings and could be undervalued. Buying undervalued stocks is an important part of value investing. Each sector has its own "normal" P/E ratio. Tech stocks typically have high P/Es because there's high future growth anticipated.

How Do I Buy Technology Stocks?

Tech stocks can be purchased just like any other stocks. You can buy stocks in individual companies which you have studied and believe will give you a solid ROI.

Having a hard time dividing which stock is right for you? Maybe you can choose to invest in an ETF or mutual fund. By doing so, you get exposure to multiple stocks that are picked by the fund manager. Funds can be focused on IPOs, companies that give dividends, high-growth companies, specific sectors in the tech sphere, and more.

Although ETFs give you broader exposure to the tech market as a whole, owning the best technology stocks individually offers savvy investors a better chance at making more money than by simply looking into ETFs.

Why Should I Invest in Tech Stocks?

Investing in tech companies is popular because it is an exciting way to profit on some of the fastest growing businesses in the world. Early investors in some of the biggest tech companies have seen massive returns. For example, Amazon stock, which is now worth thousands of dollars, had an IPO of $18.

While not every stock is going to skyrocket the way Amazon has, there is still plenty of room for growth in the tech world and the opportunity for smart investors to pick stocks with a bright future.

These High-Tech IPOs Are Fueling the Nasdaq Rally

Don't look now but big paydays are here again in the tech-heavy Nasdaq.

From the depths of the 2009 bottom, the Nasdaq is up 139%, hitting levels it hasn't seen in more than 10 years.

In the last three months alone, the bellwether index is up nearly 19% -- outpacing the 12% gain in the S&P 500.

But here's the thing: It's not all about Apple.

The high-tech IPO market is practically on fire. One of them is Jive Software (NASDAQ: JIVE).

Since Jive debuted last December, shares have jumped 25% from the offering price on the first day.

Since then, the stock has done nothing but power ahead. At the close of trading Thursday, Jive had nearly doubled in less than four months!

Hot High-Tech IPOs are a Major Market Trend

But that is just the beginning. Successful new issues like Jive reflect major trends reshaping markets.

Jive creates tools that help businesses run social networks, clearly an important way for many firms to reach new clients.

Jive is hardly alone. Several high-tech IPOs are showing excellent returns in the market's strong rally.

In fact, this actually is the best overall period for tech stocks since the "dotcom" crash 12 years ago.

Aside from Jive, several other IPOs have turned in double-digit gains in the last several months helping to lead the overall market higher - especially the Nasdaq.

Of course, the Nasdaq still needs another 40% surge to match pre-bubble values. But that's not the point.

Investors need to remember that every bull market contains leaders that have new products in new fields.

That is what always lands solid high-tech IPOs in the winner's circle.

The good news for investors is that they can expect to find more new issues in the weeks ahead.

PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP said in a recent report that 274 firms filed registrations in 2011, the largest number in several years. Of those, about 160 remain in the IPO pipeline.

Now don't get me wrong. I'm not suggesting you throw a dart at the IPO board. Far from it.

You still have to remain a disciplined, focused investor.

Just think if you'd tied up a lot of funds in BATS Global Markets. The tech-focused exchange had to withdraw its IPO last week because of a software glitch.

Of course, that kind of mistake isn't just stupid. It's inexcusable. But let's not focus on the negative.

There are just too many winners to look at.

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Growth in Google's Android Pays Off for InvenSense Inc. (NYSE: INVN)

The exploding number of Google Android devices has become a cash machine for microchip maker InvenSense Inc. (NYSE: INVN).

InvenSense makes the tiny motion sensors used in 70% of Android phones and 90% of motion-sensing Android tablets.

Mobile device makers have enthusiastically adopted Android, an operating system developed by Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG), because Google licenses it for free.

Growth in Android devices is exploding.

At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona last month, Google Senior Vice President for Mobile Andy Rubin announced that 850,000 Android devices are activated every single day, for year-over-year growth of 250%.

That kind of growth offers tremendous potential for a company like InvenSense, which only went public last November.

With 512 million mobile devices expected to be sold by 2014, the market for InvenSense promises to be huge.

InvenSense: The Best Performing IPO of 2011

These motion-sensor chips, called Micro Electro Mechanical Systems (MEMS), are what enable mobile devices to react to tilting or shaking.

Although MEMS technology has existed for decades, it was when InvenSense's motion sensing chips were used in the Nintendo Co. Ltd. (PINK ADR: NTDOY) Wii controller in 2006 that the technology started to go mainstream.

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iRobot's (Nasdaq: IRBT) Timing Couldn't Be Better For Investors

iRobot Corp. (Nasdaq: IRBT) made the right decision.

And the Pentagon just proved it.

The small-cap robotics leader knows only too well it needs to increase its private sector sales as America works to cut defense spending.

That's why iRobot Corp. has reorganized to target the health care, retail and security industries.

For investors, the timing couldn't be better.

After all, the Defense Department has announced several new robotics breakthroughs in recent days.

This shows the U.S. military is still completely committed to using robots to win the War of the Future.

But now that American troops have left Iraq, the Pentagon's top brass is pinching pennies like never before.

And yet...it has new robots to brag about.

In a moment, I'll tell you all about them. But first...

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Tech Stocks to Watch: Cisco (CSCO), Apple (AAPL), Demandware (DWRE)

Tech stocks continued their all-star year yesterday (Thursday) with a Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) deal, a new intraday high for Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL), and an explosive first-day performance for Demandware Inc. (NYSE: DWRE) moving markets.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq closed up 0.51% to 3,056.37.

Here's why these are the tech stocks to watch today (Friday):

Cisco Systems (CSCO) makes play for video: Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) announced a $4 billion deal with video-software specialist NDS Group Ltd, a small company based outside London.

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Tech Stocks Soar on "Off the Charts" Demand for Apple Inc.'s (Nasdaq: AAPL) Products

If you're invested in technology stocks, you've had a great ride lately.

With demand for Apple Inc.'s (Nasdaq: AAPL) products soaring, tech stocks will continue to do well.

Tech stocks have posted a whopping 16% return in 2012, the top performing sector in the Standard & Poor's 500 index. By comparison, the broader market has notched just a 9% gain year-to-date (YTD).

"Large-cap technology stocks have exceeded our expectations with better revenues, earnings, margins and cash flows," Michael Sansoterra, a sub-adviser for the Ridgeworth Large Cap Growth Fund, told The Wall Street Journal. "You just can't find that elsewhere in the large-cap growth space."

Tech Stocks Offer Bargains

Even as they march higher, prices for tech stocks are a relative bargain.

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Tech Stocks to Watch: Pandora Media (NYSE: P), Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), Yahoo (Nasdaq: YHOO)


This week's news moving tech stocks includes today's (Tuesday's) Pandora Media Inc. (NYSE: P) earnings report, tomorrow's (Wednesday's) Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPad debut, and Yahoo Inc.'s (Nasdaq: YHOO) rumored layoffs.

Pandora Media (NYSE: P) Earnings: Internet radio site Pandora, which went public June 15 last year, released fourth-quarter earnings after the bell today.

Pandora lost $8.18 million, or five cents a share, due to higher costs for advertising, marketing and content acquisition. Fourth-quarter revenue rose to $81.3 million from $47.6 million, a 71% year-over-year increase. Advertising revenue was $72.1 million, up 74% from the year before, and subscription and other revenue was up 51% to $9.2 million.

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Technology Stocks: Five Tech Stocks to Avoid This Year

After a rocky 2011, tech stocks have gotten a nice bounce this year.

The Nasdaq 100 index is up well above the rise in the Standard & Poor's 500 index.

Strong earnings from Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC), Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) and International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE: IBM) have drawn attention to tech stocks.

And Apple, Inc (Nasdaq: AAPL) blew past all expectations, making a record $13.06 billion in profits for the quarter.

But while tech stocks may look tempting right now, knowing which tech stocks to avoid will prevent a lot of pain to your portfolio in 2012.

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So here are five tech stocks you should avoid, at least for now

Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) Earnings Disappoint, Still a Tech Stock to Avoid in 2012

Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) delivered disappointing earnings today (Wednesday), showing new CEO Meg Whitman is still working on nursing the tech giant back to health.

Hewlett-Packard's adjusted earnings per share were 92 cents on revenue of $30 billion in the first quarter, while Wall Street was expecting H-P to earn 87 cents on sales of $30.67 billion.

Earnings fell 32% from the same period a year ago, and revenue slipped 7%.

Hewlett-Packard Co. Stock Price History
(NYSE: HPQ


H-P is the world's largest PC maker, but its glory days are long gone. Over the past year, H-P stock has fallen about 40%.

Its financials for the November - January fiscal quarter illustrate the steep climb H-P faces to regain its profitable leading spot.

"All [its] segments are going to have headwinds," Abhey Lamba, an analyst at Mizuho Securities USA Inc., told BusinessWeek. "It's not going to be a one-year turnaround."

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Tech Stocks: NVIDIA Corp. (Nasdaq: NVDA) Earnings Must Show Move to Mobile

NVIDIA Corp. (Nasdaq: NVDA) will join tech stocks reporting earnings this week when it releases fourth-quarter results after the bell today (Wednesday) - and attempts to attract investors with a plan to profit from mobile computing growth.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters forecast quarterly earnings of 19 cents per share on $950.5 million in revenue.

The graphics chipmaker already cut its revenue outlook in January from $1.066 billion to $950 million. It said flooding in Thailand had slowed the global hard-drive market, lowering PC shipments.

NVIDIA invented the graphics processing unit (GPU) in 1999, and its graphics cards are used in many desktop computers and notebooks. Graphics card sales account for 30% of the company's revenue.

But the industry is changing in a way that will render NVIDIA'S core business obsolete. Competitors are releasing new processors more advanced than NVIDIA's.

What investors should look for in Wednesday's report are NVIDIA's plans to expand beyond its PC focus into the next era of computing, and if those plans can stand up to stiff competition.

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Tech Stocks to Watch: Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL), Research in Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM), Guidewire Software

Research in Motion Ltd. (Nasdaq: RIMM), Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL), and a software company's IPO round out the biggest headline-making tech stocks this week - but not all are "Buys."

Major change for RIM: Research in Motion, the struggling Blackberry smartphone maker, has named a new Chief Executive Officer to replace co-CEOS Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie - but could be too little, too late for RIM.

The company announced Monday morning that RIM-insider Thorsten Heins would take over the reins effective immediately. Lazaridis will stay on as vice chairman of the board; Balsillie will stay as a director.

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Investing in Tech Stocks in 2012: New Opportunities Arise from Scrapped AT&T Deal

The end of the AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) deal with T-Mobile USA isn't just a win for U.S. consumers - it's creating new opportunities for investing in tech stocks in 2012.

Since AT&T Inc. announced Monday it was backing out of the $39 billion deal to avoid a lengthy and costly legal battle, the tech sector has been buzzing with what's next for both companies.

The acquisition of T-Mobile USA, a subsidiary of Germany-based Deutsche Telekom AG (PINK ADR: DTEGY), would have made AT&T the largest U.S. wireless carrier, leapfrogging current No. 1 Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ). It would have also thrown a lifeline to the ailing T-Mobile, the fourth-largest U.S. wireless provider behind Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint Nextel Corp. (NYSE: S).

But AT&T couldn't prove to the U.S. Justice Department, which filed an antitrust suit in August, that the deal wouldn't ruin competition by creating an industry duopoly. Ever since AT&T announced the plan in March, U.S. consumers feared future higher rates and fewer plan and phone options.



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