Case filed in wrong state, Appeals court says
The 3rd US Circuit Court of Appeals has unanimously tossed the conviction of Andrew Auernheimer, an Arkansas man accused of stealing the personal data of about 120,000 iPad users, says Reuters. Auernheimer was convicted of the crimes in November 2012 and sentenced to 41 months in prison. The case was filed in New Jersey however, and the appeals court has ruled that he was prosecuted in the wrong state, since his crimes weren't committed there.
Microsoft opens pre-orders for Surface 2 with LTE in UK
Microsoft has opened up pre-orders for the Surface 2 with LTE in the United Kingdom. Just as with its launch last month in the United States, the UK edition will be limited to just a 64GB model, and its £539 ($905) represents a £100 ($168) increase over the standard Wi-Fi model. Microsoft will be shipping the Windows RT tablet on the 8th of May.
Revamped HTC One M8 knocks Galaxy S4 from second at Verizon
The iPhone -- specifically, the iPhone 5s -- has been the top seller at all four major US carriers since its introduction, a trend that continued in March according to figures compiled by Canaccord Genuity analyst T. Michael Walkley. The year-old Samsung Galaxy S4 took second place among three of the four carriers, though it was knocked out of second at Verizon by the new HTC One M8. The S4 took third at Verizon, with the company's Note 3 phablet taking third at AT&T and Sprint, while the LG G2 took third at T-Mobile.
Five-inch Full HD display of PadFone X joined by nine-inch tablet dock
AT&T has revealed details about the upcoming PadFone X, close to three months after its initial announcement. The smartphone section will use a 5-inch 1080p display, which can be slotted into the back of an accompanying tablet dock, providing a larger 9-inch 1920x1200 screen as well as an extra power supply by a secondary battery, among other extras.
AT&T announces addition of Android 4.4 to its available Galaxy Note 3 units
AT&T announced today that it is now rolling out the latest version of Android for its version of the Samsung Galaxy Note 3. Current users of the Note 3 through AT&T can update through the Software Update menu. Upon doing so, users will receive a revised user interface, improved GPS, and the option to select a default messaging app. When initiating the system update, AT&T recommends the device has at least a 50 percent charged battery.
Post in response to remarks made by Netflix CEO
The Netflix and large ISP peering arrangement war of words is heating up. After Netflix CEO Reed Hastings' remarks yesterday, AT&T has also penned a missive in which it claims that ISPs who follow strong net neutrality provisions -- giving relatively cost-free data to the streamers -- is nothing less than suggesting "that people who don't subscribe to Netflix should nonetheless pay for Netflix."
Pre-orders for Galaxy S5 start tomorrow on both carriers
(Updated with T-Mobile launch details) AT&T and US Cellular will be putting up Samsung's flagship smartphone for pre-order tomorrow, with AT&T also preparing to sell the manufacturer's new wearable devices. The Samsung Galaxy S5 on both, as well as the Tizen-powered Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo smart watches and the Gear Fit on AT&T, will be available to order through the carrier's stores and websites, with devices set to ship in early April.
Report notes six percentage point drop on cable company market share
According to data collated by the Leichtman Research Group, Comcast and Time Warner Cable are suffering under the weight of the economy and the "cord-cutting" movement. In 2013, Comcast lost 305,000 subscribers, with Time Warner Cable shedding 825,000. Combined, the pair will have 33.1 million customers, approximately two-thirds of the US cable company market.
64GB Surface 2 with LTE priced $130 over standard edition
Microsoft is preparing to ship a version of the Surface 2 with 4G LTE connectivity on AT&T's network tomorrow, six months after the company unveiled the updated device range. The 64GB model with LTE will cost $679, a premium of $130 over the standard 64GB model, with the tablet being sold via the Microsoft Store and Best Buy.
$1.3 billion paid for first US regional carrier to offer the iPhone
The Federal Communications Commission has approved the buyout of Leap Wireless by AT&T, a $1.3 billion cash deal that will see America's largest carrier acquire Leap's PCS and AWS band spectrum, which it will use for LTE expansion, as well as Leap's 4.6 million customers. Leap was the first independent regional carrier to offer a prepaid iPhone in 2012, and as a concession in the acquisition deal, AT&T will continue the option, as well as offer GSM iPhone support and migration to Cricket users.
Deal likely to be halted by US regulators, but effort will be made anyhow
In a television interview with PBS's Charlie Rose, Sprint chairman Masayoshi Son declared that he was interested in buying T-Mobile. Citing "steps and details" that have yet to be negotiated, the executive claimed that he "would like to have the real fight, OK? Not the pseudo fight, the real fight" with competitors AT&T and Verizon.
Offerings available at first for 2015 A3, will be added to other vehicles
Audi of America and AT&T have announced 4G LTE data plans for the 2015 A3 Sedan, which debuts this month, and will enable the first-ever in-vehicle 4G LTE data connection in North America. Additionally, Audi has revealed that an accompanying mobile app will allow advanced functionality between the in-car system and smartphones, reducing the need for Audi motorists to handle devices when accessing some smartphone-based features.
AT&T cuts wireless data charges for individual customers without contact
AT&T has announced wireless data price cuts to individual customers that do not have annual service contracts. Done in an attempt to rival its competitor, T-Mobile, customers having one smartphone with no annual service contract will now pay $65 per month instead of $80 for a plan that features 2GB LTE wireless data, unlimited talk and text messaging, unlimited international messaging and 50GB of cloud storage. Those who have two smartphones will now pay $90 per month.
Grandfathered plans, other apps not included in free offer
Commencing February 28, all AT&T Mobile Share and Mobile Share Value plans will include unlimited international messaging from the US to the rest of the world, meaning AT&T consumer and business Mobile Share customers can send unlimited texts, pictures and video messages. Current Mobile Share and Mobile Share Value customers will automatically benefit from the new offer, and will additionally see international calling from the US to any number in 42 countries drop to one penny per minute, including Canada and Mexico.
Sony starts selling PlayStation 4 in Japan months after US, European launches
Sony has launched the PlayStation 4 game console in Japan, months after shipping it to customers in the United States and Europe. While it has already sold 5.3 million units in other markets when competing against the Xbox One, the launch in Japan will be largely uncontested, with The Verge noting no news of an Xbox One launch in the country has been issued by Microsoft, and the Nintendo's Wii-U continues to sell poorly.
Obama initiative valued at about $750 million
US President Barack Obama is today announcing commitments from several US corporations towards connecting more students to high-speed Internet, says the Associated Press. In all, about $750 million has been pledged; Apple is offering $100 million in iPads, computers, and other tools, while Verizon is providing the same amount in straight cash and in-kind contributions. AT&T and Sprint are offering free Internet access; Microsoft is promising copies of Windows at discounted rates, and 12 million free copies of Microsoft Office.
AT&T transfer promotion ended on January 31st
AT&T has stopped a promotion that offered customers up to $450 per line when they transferred from T-Mobile. The incentive, which provided a $200 automatic credit and up to a further $250 when trading in a smartphone, was put in place just one month ago in order to spoil a similar planned promotion by T-Mobile, offering to pay the early termination fees of customers transferring from AT&T to the carrier.
Microsoft announces discontinuation of InfoPath, plans to support client until 2023
Microsoft announced this week its discontinuation of the company's electronic form software, InfoPath. InfoPath featured the ability to design, distribute, fill, and submit electronic forms with structured data. InfoPath 2013 is the last release of the desktop client, and InfoPath Form Service in Sharepoint Server 2013 is the last release of its services suite. InfoPath 2013 client is planned to be supported through until April 2023, and InfoPath Forms Services in Office 365 will be supported until further notice. Migration scenarios and guidance will be released in the fourth quarter of 2014.
Call for experiments could help telecommunication providers get rid of copper-based landlines
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has taken its first steps in overhauling the analog telephone system in the United States, by authorizing voluntary testing by carriers. The unanimous vote will allow telecommunication providers, such as AT&T, to experiment with landlines in various ways, such as providing an IP-based telephone service to its customers.
War for customers with T-Mobile intensifies with new offer
AT&T is increasing the amount it is giving to customers to sign up, as well as existing customers, by offering $100 in billing credit for every new line added to an account. The extra credit will be available to both new and existing customers, and is the latest in the continuing aggressive battle for customers between the carrier and T-Mobile.
Total smartphone penetration grows to 77 percent from 70 percent in 2012
AT&T has released its quarterly earnings report. For the latest period, the company's consolidated revenues totaled $33.2 billion, up 1.8 percent versus the year-earlier period. Compared with results for the fourth quarter of 2012, operating expenses were $20.9 billion versus $38.5 billion, and operating income was $12.2 billion compared to a loss of $6.0 billion. Notably, smartphones accounted for a record 93 percent of postpaid phone sales in the quarter, which included the release of Apple's iPhone 5c and 5s.
Discussions could lead to $99 billion acquisition of European carrier
[Updated with AT&T comment] AT&T could be looking towards a purchase of Vodafone in the future, with reports that the company is talking to European regulators over a potential acquisition in the region of £60 billion ($99 billion). AT&T CEO and chairman Randall Stephenson is said to have met with EU Telecoms Commissioner Neelie Kroes at the World Economic Forum, with a possible acquisition of the UK carrier reportedly discussed.
Tech first revealed at CES 2013
Accessory maker Incipio and carrier AT&T have launched the Cashwrap, a new iPhone case enabling NFC-based payments. The case is based on the Isis platform, something normally only accessible by Android devices. Black, gray, and pink colors are available; two sizes support the iPhone 5/5s and iPhone 4/4S, respectively. Each case is $69, except for the black iPhone 5/5s model, which is listed at $65.
Customers on a two-year plan before January 19th can use AT&T Next
AT&T is revising the terms of its early upgrade plan, by allowing existing subscribers to sign up to the plan mid-contract. Customers on a two-year commitment with the company before January 19th will be eligible for AT&T Next once they hit the six-month milestone, with subscribers also able to switch over to the carrier's Mobile Share Value plans at the same time.
Curved LG smartphone to land in more than 20 European markets
Europe will start to receive the LG G Flex next month, with the curved smartphone launching in more than 20 countries on the continent. At the same time, AT&T reveals it will be joining Sprint and T-Mobile in offering the concave mobile device in the United States, with pre-orders through the carrier starting from January 24th, priced at $299.
Plan for data allowances paid for by content providers to face scrutiny
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) may look into how AT&T conducts the "Sponsored Data" program it introduced earlier this week. The FCC Chairman, Tom Wheeler, reportedly expressed concerns that the plan to allow content providers to pay for data used by customers over the carrier's cellular network could be anticompetitive.
Customers shifting to T-Mobile will receive up to $350 to pay old carrier fees
T-Mobile is removing the issue of Early Termination Fees (ETF) for customers wishing to change carrier, the company has revealed. The plan, confirming a rumor from earlier today, will give subscribers and families up to $350 per line to cover the ETF, with customers able to start switching from AT&T, Verizon, or Sprint under the scheme starting from tomorrow.
Leaked family termination fee advertisement suggests similar offer to AT&T promotion
T-Mobile may be preparing to offer families an incentive to change carrier, if a reported leaked advertisement is real. The "UnCarrier" will apparently pay the Early Termination Fees (ETF) associated with canceling a contract, a plan that sounds relatively similar to another promotion from AT&T, though it is unclear if it is a direct response to AT&T's attempt to poach T-Mobile customers directly.
Allows companies to push content without breaking plan limits
AT&T has introduced Sponsored Data, a new program that will allow businesses to cover the costs of data for cellular subscribers, bypassing the caps most mobile plans have. A developer or publisher, for instance, might choose to cover the costs of an app, or a movie studio might pay for trailer downloads. More obscure possibilities include covering the costs of visiting shopping and healthcare websites, paying for internal business-related traffic, or attaching sponsored data to loyalty programs.
New plan's testing to be complete by 2020, timetable for migration unclear
AT&T has filed with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) its plan on how it intends to test the process of upgrading the nation's telephony infrastructure to fiber-optic based, rather than copper. In its filing, the company has said that it will select markets not based on ease of transition, but as a way to learn about the process to streamline the effort in its trial phases -- which are supposed to be complete before 2020.
Curved LG smartphone could land in US in coming months
LG will be bringing its curved smartphone to AT&T and T-Mobile in the United States in the near future, if a new image leak is proven true. The render of two LG G Flex devices showing AT&T and T-Mobile branding on the screen seemingly hint at a potential launch, and reignites rumors from November that LG would bringing the device to North America.
BlackBerry Z30 spotted at FCC using AT&T frequencies
BlackBerry could be bringing the Z30 smartphone to AT&T in the future, according to an FCC filing. The listing spotted by Berry Review appears to show the device, with a 5-inch 1280x720 Super AMOLED display, dual-core 1.7GHz processor, and 2GB of RAM, as sporting radios on AT&T bands, strongly suggesting that the more-powerful flagship device could launch in the US as an alternative to Verizon.
Verizon upgrades Droid Ultra, Droid Maxx, Droid Mini to Android KitKat
Verizon is rolling out Android KitKat to its current range of Droid smartphones. Owners of the Droid Ultra, Droid Maxx, and Droid Mini will receive the update from today onwards, with version 4.4 of the operating system bringing a full-screen mode, camera improvements, an updated Droid Zap app, an update for Motorola Assist, and support for the Fitbit, among other items.
AT&T signs deal with EE for 4G roaming in UK, will offer similar connection in early 2014
AT&T has signed a deal with Everything Everywhere in the United Kingdom, allowing the US carrier's subscribers access to the 4G network when visiting, in a similar deal to one between AT&T and Rogers in Canada. Though the pricing of the deal were not disclosed, Pocket Lint reports that EE customers will be able to get 4G speeds from AT&T's network in the US in the first half of 2014.
On the agenda are NSA surveillance, Obamacare, income inequality
President Obama is spending part of December 17 in conference with an assortment of Silicon Valley executives in order to "address national security and the economic impacts of unauthorized intelligence disclosures." On tap to meet at the White House are Apple CEO Tim Cook, Yahoo President and CEO Marissa Mayer, Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt, AT&T Chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson, and 11 others.
Cheaper fiber plan requires monitoring of high-speed Internet connection
AT&T has started accepting registrations for its fiber-based Internet offering in Austin, as the company continues to fight against Google Fiber. U-Verse with GigaPower offers residents in the city TV services and Internet access at speeds of up to 300Mbps, which will be upgraded to gigabit speeds at no extra charge when it becomes available in 2014, though an option for a cheaper plan requires AT&T to monitor the connection's usage.
Remarks about subsidy future, upcoming market targets made in NYC
Addressing a friendly crowd of investors in New York City, AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson noted that with cellphone adoption at 75 percent and climbing, networks would likely soon stop offering large subsidies for devices. The move comes on the heels of AT&T's new pricing plan, that offers customers discounts of up to $15 per month if users retain an older device, rather than upgrade it after two years of use.
Special conditions apply
AT&T has introduced Mobile Share Value Plans, a new discount option for its subscribers. The option cuts significant amounts per month off of a Mobile Share plan, so long as a customer meets certain criteria: people must have an off-contract phone, or else upgrade through AT&T's Next program. Under these scenarios, a person can save between $10 and $115 per month on a single device, and between $20 and $105 on a two-device account. Two phones on a 4GB plan, for instance, costs $120 per month.
Cross-carrier stolen phone database will connect with international versions
Work on a national stolen phone database covering AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon Wireless handsets has been completed, according to an announcement from CTIA. The wireless association revealed that the multi-carrier database has been implemented before its November 30th deadline, one which it hopes to connect to overseas carriers to protect against thefts worldwide.
AT&T killing support for U-Verse on Xbox 360 at end of 2013
AT&T will stop supporting the Xbox 360 under its U-Verse service after December 31st of this year. The service, which allowed the game console to act as a secondary set-top box for watching TV, with a representative advising Polygon that it was being pulled due to "low customer demand," and that it will not appear on the Xbox One. An e-mail sent out to a number of subscribers details a $99 credit to cover part of the cost of Xbox Live Gold membership, as well as the required conversion kit.
Supplies finally catching up to demand
Roughly 90 percent of iPhone 5s models are back in stock at US Apple Stores, according to data collected by Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster. Breaking figures down by carrier, the two biggest US providers -- AT&T and Verizon -- are showing 99 and 98 percent availability, respectively. The ratio shrinks to 72 percent for Sprint; unmentioned are figures for T-Mobile or SIM-free models.
Sprint now lowest rated carrier for satisfaction
Sprint, the United States' third-largest wireless carrier, came in last among the major carriers in the newest Consumer Reports survey of customer satisfaction. The Consumer Reports National Research Center polled 58,399 subscribers, and their responses indicated a precipitous drop for Sprint from last year, when it placed second among the major carriers. The overall leader among the major carriers was Verizon, which saw high marks for both data service and some aspects of customer support.
Hotspot launches on Friday with LTE Advanced support
Following on from the original Unite, AT&T will be launching a new mobile hotspot later this week, one that takes advantage of the carrier's 4G LTE network. The AT&T Unite Pro offers the ability to connect up to 15 devices simultaneously to the same cellular connection, with its battery able to provide up to 16 hours of use on one charge, as well as being able to top up the battery on mobile devices using its USB port.
Price of Moto X lowered on carriers after Moto G launch
Following the launch of the low-cost Moto G, a number of carriers in the United States have started to lower their prices for the Moto X. While Republic Wireless offers the device off-contract, versions as part of a two-year commitment have received price cuts, with one offer seemingly being priced at $0.01.
Devices were often unlocked for sale outside US
A change deterring mass unlocks of AT&T iPhones has effectively killed a portion of the iPhone resale industry, the Wall Street Journal reports. Until early October, businesses were able to buy large numbers of AT&T models and easily unlock them for sale in regions like China, where even an imported gray-market phone is often cheaper than what Apple and local carriers charge. Since the change has taken effect, though, some vendors that specialized in reselling unlocked iPhones have suffered or gone out of business.
Moto X customization now on all major carriers
As many expected, the Moto Maker Moto X customization feature has now expanded from AT&T to include all four major American carriers. The Moto X site now shows Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile as carrier options, along with AT&T. The expansion of the feature to at least Verizon was anticipated by many, as the carrier accidentally leaked a page showing off the Motorola flagship and saying it could be customized. That page, though, was quickly taken down, and the feature was put back under wraps until its proper launch today.
Nokia Lumia 1520 pre-orders open in US, ships November 22nd
AT&T has opened up pre-orders for the Nokia Lumia 1520, with the device shipping on November 22nd, later than first thought. Priced at $200 on a two-year contract, $585 off-contract, and $27 per month under AT&T Next, the Lumia 1520 offers a six-inch 1080p IPS display, a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor clocked at 2.2GHz, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, and a 20-megapixel PureView camera on the back.
Voluntary contract for call data claimed between CIA, AT&T
The CIA has allegedly paid out more than $10 million per year to AT&T for access to data relating to international calls, according to a report. The transfer of metadata between the carrier and the agency is said by the New York Times to be a "voluntary contract," one that is performed freely rather than requiring court orders and subpoenas, unlike that of notorious surveillance program PRISM.
Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom reaches US on November 8th
Samsung has confirmed earlier rumors that AT&T will be the first US carrier to offer its Galaxy S4 Zoom to customers, from November 8th. Priced at $200 on a two-year contract or $25 per month under AT&T Next, the Galaxy S4 Zoom has a 4.3-inch qHD screen with a dual-core 1.5GHz processor, 1.5GB of RAM, LTE connectivity, and a 16-megapixel CMOS sensor on the back with optical image stabilization, a Xenon flash, and a 10x optical zoom.