Company's growth rate slips
Apple remains in first place on an annual BrandZ ranking of the world's most valuable brands, notes MarketingWeek. Apple's brand is estimated to be worth $185.071 billion, putting it well ahead of next-closest rivals Google ($113.669 billion) and IBM ($112.536 billion). Other companies in the top 10 include McDonald's, Coca-Cola, AT&T, Microsoft, Marlboro, Visa, and China Mobile.
Encourages donations to Red Cross after storm kills more than 91
In the aftermath of the devastating tornado that cut a path of destruction through Oklahoma City on Monday, wireless carrier AT&T announced that overage charges would be suspended for the area until June 30 as part of an effort to assist victims, many of whom lost everything. Due to high call volumes as friends and family check on their loved ones, the company said it would add additional resources to relieve cell congestion.
FaceTime, Google Hangouts primary beneficiaries of new policy
AT&T has made a statement regarding the future of video chat applications on its LTE network. According to the telecom company, all "pre-loaded video chat apps" will be available for all of its wireless customers "regardless of data plan or device" by the end of the year. The move is a turnaround from previous decisions by the company to prohibit use of FaceTime and now Google Hangouts chat on mostly grandfathered unlimited data plans.
Aimed at existing customers eligible for an iPhone 5 upgrade
Hot on the heels of iPhone 5 promotions from T-Mobile and Verizon, AT&T appears to have thrown its hat into the ring with reports that existing, upgrade-eligible customers are being targeted in a new email. The email offers special trade-in pricing for used iPhone 4S models, promising up to $200 in credit towards the cost of an iPhone 5 -- effectively cancelling out the up-front cost of moving up. Appleinsider reports that the email may be only a regional promotion instead of national.
Ratings on Facebook Home app remain poor
According to reports, AT&T is considering discontinuing the two-month-old HTC First Facebook phone. Sources have claimed that in the short time the HTC handset has been available, less than 15,000 units nationwide were sold up to and including AT&T's $1 promotion for the device.
Verizon and AT&T express interest in the general idea
According to recent reports, media companies with high-bandwidth apps are considering deals with wireless carriers to ensure users can consume the content without being slapped with data overage fines. Reportedly, sports network ESPN has had discussions with at least one carrier to subsidize users' wireless data usage, with the company paying to offset data used by subscribers.
Service currently limited to Houston, Orlando, Tampa
AT&T has officially launched Aio Wireless, an awaited MVNO carrier offering cheaper prepaid plans. Aio is offering Basic, Smart, and Pro tiers for phones, all of which including unlimited calling and texting. Basic costs between $35 and $40, and includes 250MB of data. Smart costs $55 per month for 2GB, and the $70 Pro plan ups the data cap to 7GB. Once a cap is exceeded, Aio begins throttling speeds. A special $15 tablet plan provides 250MB of data.
Included display provides usage statistics, remaining allowance
AT&T has added to its range of 4G LTE connectivity devices with a built-in display. The AT&T Beam from Sierra Wireless is a USB modem that connects to the carrier's 4G LTE network, and like the MiFi Liberate, it comes with its own LCD panel to provide important details, such as the strength of the signal and how much data is remaining in the monthly allowance.
Facebook makes first appearance on list
Business magazine Fortune has released the 2013 edition of its list of the 500 biggest corporations in the US. One of the most significant shifts in the list is the ascendancy of Apple, which has jumped from 17th place to sixth, breaking into the top 10 for the first time. Fortune comments that while the company has "maintained more than disrupted" its product line, and even had to apologize for iOS 6 Maps and its Chinese warranty services, it "remains an innovation icon."
Verizon program spawned from acquisition of developer ItsOn
Industry giants Verizon and AT&T are both looking at moving more aggressively into pay-as-you-go phone offerings. Carrier software developer ItsOn will be launching a consumer facing portal later this month, likely under the Verizon umbrella. Additionally, AT&T is readying its "All In One"-branded plan, likely supplementing -- rather than replacing -- the GoPhone network already in place.
Discounts on $200 up-front charge for phone trade-ins
AT&T has officially announced it will be bringing the LG Optimus G Pro to its network. Confirming previous rumors, the carrier will be offering the smartphone on a two-year contract with an up-front $200 charge, with pre-orders online and in retail stores starting from May 3rd for a release one week later, on May 10th.
AT&T offers $100 or more for smart phones less than three years old
Starting May 1, AT&T is offering a $100 credit off the purchase of a new phone in its corporate retail stores. The promotion applies to any smartphone AT&T sells, including the Galaxy S4 and iPhone 5 -- and gives owners of phones less than three years old in good working condition the credit. Phones valued at over $100 will receive a credit at a higher value, to be determined by AT&T.
Device 80 percent of carrier's smartphone sales
AT&T's March quarter results included 4.8 million iPhone activations, data shows. The device represented 80 percent of the carrier's 6 million overall smartphone sales for the quarter. The figure compares favorably against the 4.7 million iPhones AT&T sold in the iPhone 5's launch period, but represents a significant if expected drop from the record 8 million sold during the December quarter.
Wireless data revenues up 21 percent, 1.2M smartphone sales
Quarterly results from AT&T shows the company has managed to increase its year-on-year earnings by $100 million to $3.7 billion, matching the expectations of Wall Street. The financial information also tells that its consolidated revenues of $31.4 billion is down 1.5 percent compared to the same period last year.
Delayed HTC One ships online, some stores face delays
The HTC One has gone on sale in the United States today, launching on Sprint, T-Mobile, and AT&T at the same time. The three carriers are offering the flagship smartphone through their online stores, though in some cases, brick and mortar retail outlets are left waiting until next week to start selling the device.
Training document shows Staples opening pre-orders tomorrow
The Samsung Galaxy S4 may hit retail stores in the US late next week, according to a leaked document from Staples. An in-store training sheet shows the smartphone reaching AT&T well before T-Mobile and Verizon, based on “tentative launch dates,” as well as details concerning Staple's handling of handset pre-orders.
Optimus smartphones to extend LTE-capable catalog of carriers
A pair of LG Optimus smartphones with LTE connectivity appear to be heading to US carriers in the coming months. The Optimus G Pro is rumored to land on AT&T at some point in May, while the Optimus F7 will apparently become Boost Mobile's third LTE-capable device, and has already appeared in an image in its carrier-branded form.
New AT&T 4G LTE markets include Napa, Santa Rosa-Petaluma
Shortly after stating it will build a Gigabit fiber network to compete against Google in Austin, AT&T has expanded its 4G LTE network into six new markets. While this means the carrier is currently covering 182 different markets, AT&T also plans to add another 77 markets to the list by this summer, as the carrier tries to catch up to Verizon Wireless and its 4G LTE network.
Users limited to 1GB of data per month
Software and service provider Boingo Wireless today revealed a deal with AT&T allowing global roaming data subscribers to use Boingo's network of Wi-Fi hotspots globally. By way of the AT&T Wi-Fi Internataional App, users can locate and sign into the network operated by Boingo's subsidiary, Concourse Communications Group. The AT&T Wi-Fi International app is available to AT&T customers who subscribe to either the 300MB or 800MB AT&T Data Global Add-On package. Pay-as-you-go or other data cap packages are ineligible for the offering.
Says it expects government to offer same breaks as Google
Following in the wake of Google's announcement of Fiber expansion in Austin, AT&T has announced similar plans, according to a press release. The company is planning to build out a gigabit fiber network in the city, but hasn't yet revealed what parts of the city will be served, or what the gigabit tier might cost. Likewise, it hasn't set a timeline for when the network will be completed.
Handset carries entry-level price
Confirming earlier rumors, HTC has introduced its First smartphone as an AT&T exclusive. Although the device is not designed by Facebook or powered by a Facebook-developed operating system, it is the first to designed specifically for the social network's new Facebook Home experience that was introduced earlier today for Android phones.
HTC One 32GB for $200, exclusive 64GB for $300
The HTC One has gone on sale in the United States as a pre-order through one carrier, while others are still preparing for their own sales. AT&T has started taking orders for the smartphone today as promised, while Sprint will be opening their pre-order queue tomorrow. Canadian carrier Telus has also announced it will open up sales for the HTC One in the near future, ahead of the phone launch.
Proposal would give Verizon complete Wireless control
Verizon and AT&T are said to be working together in order to acquire and then break apart Vodafone, according to a rumor. After purchasing the British carrier, Verizon would in theory take control of Vodafone's 45-percent share of Verizon Wireless, while AT&T would own all assets located outside of the United States, though the rumor already appears to have been dismissed.
Move part of further LTE initiatives by carrier, including protocol improvements
On Monday at the VentureBeat Mobile Summit in California, AT&T Senior Vice President Kris Rinne reported that the carrier would activate HD Voice on its network later in 2013, calling it "part of our voice over LTE strategy." Also in the interview, the executive described previous call quality concerns as "off the table," and mostly resolved.
HTC One preorder, Fire HD LTE sales begin April 5
AT&T revealed today that a new pair of devices will be available for puchase and use on its networks soon. Starting April 5, AT&T retail stores will be carrying the Kindle Fire HD 8.9 with a two-year subsidized price. Additionally, preorders of the HTC One smartphone will begin on the same day.
Galaxy S4 to cost $250, on two-year AT&T contract
The Samsung Galaxy S4 will be able to be pre-ordered in the US in the near future, and is already available for pre-order in the UK. AT&T managed to be the first carrier to announce when the smartphone will go on sale in the United States, while on the other side of the Atlantic, most carriers in the United Kingdom have started accepting orders for the 4.99-inch mobile device.
Service behind AT&T U-Verse could be sold within weeks
Microsoft is allegedly talking to Ericsson to sell its IPTV business. The sale, which would include the same MediaRoom unit that powers the U-Verse IPTV service from AT&T among others, could be announced by the companies in the next few weeks, and could be a way for Microsoft to streamline its Entertainment and Devices division.
Length of prison term generates criticism
One of the hackers behind a 2010 leak of 114,000 email addresses tied to AT&T iPad owners has been sentenced to 41 months in prison, reports say. Andrew Auernheimer was found guilty of conspiracy and identity fraud in November, and like co-defendant Daniel Spitler, has been ordered to pay AT&T $73,000 in damages. Spitler, though, received a 12- to 18-month prison sentence after pleading guilty in 2011.
Data-only version of Mobile Share also being introduced
AT&T is updating its shared data plans for business and consumer customers, with three new tiers offering larger data allowances. Expanding from its existing Mobile Share packages, companies can now get a data allowance of 30GB, 40GB, or 50GB to share between devices, along with the unlimited text messages and unlimited talk-time the smaller allocations offer.
Current US ban on self-unlocking likely to be reversed
Following a decision by the Copyright Office of the Library of Congress that ruled that unlocking an iPhone without carrier permission is now illegal -- and pressure from both President Obama and the FCC to reverse the ban -- AT&T has clarified its policy and will unlock customer smartphones that have completed their contract. The move requires a customer's account to be in good standing with no unpaid balance, but the company has not mentioned an extra fee for the service.
New user monitoring system powered by error-prone MarkMonitor
As expected, the Center for Copyright Information's BitTorrent monitoring system has launched, but with all five previously-announced ISPs starting up in one day. Participating ISPs in the measure, also known as "six strikes," include Verizon, Comcast, AT&T, Cablevision, and Time Warner, plus all subsidiaries of the parent companies.
Sources familiar with the matter claim all five ISPs commence this week
According to reports, the much-delayed "six strikes" copyright enforcement monitoring system will go live over the next week, with Internet provider Comcast launching on Monday. The Copyright Alert System (CAS), run by the Center for Copyright Information (CCI) has no official launch date, and has been held up by implementation issues, and the damaging effects of Superstorm Sandy. ISPs AT&T, Cablevision, Comcast, Time Warner, and Verizon are all signed up for the system.
Hotspot has touch-screen display, ten-device limit
AT&T will be offering a second mobile hotspot with touchscreen capabilities to customers later this week. The AT&T Unite by Sierra Wireless will allow users the ability to create a ten-device Wi-Fi hotspot that uses the carrier's 4G LTE phone network, with the further option of allowing the creation of a guest network for one-time users.
T-Mobile strategy could spread to other US carriers
The CEOs of AT&T and Verizon have expressed interest in T-Mobile's plan to drop subsidies and offer the option of buying phones through monthly installments, a Reuters report says. "That’s something we’ve looked at on several occasions. I kind of like that idea," says AT&T's CEO, Randall Stephenson. "It’s something we’re going to be watching."
Should allow AT&T to make significant LTE expansions
AT&T has bought $1.9 billion in 700 MHz B spectrum from Verizon Wireless, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing. AT&T says that the licenses should cover over 42 million people in 18 states: California, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Louisiana, Montana, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington and Wyoming. As a part of the deal, it will also get AWS (Advanced Wireless Services) spectrum in five of those markets.
Company claims 55 percent of user base using 4G phones
Adding to the rash of major company quarterly results, AT&T has posted its own numbers. For the quarter that concluded on December 31, the company's revenues totaled $32.6 billion, up 0.2 percent versus the same time period in 2011, but posted a $6 billion loss regardless of earnings. Fourth-quarter 2012 cash from operating activities grew to $10.5 billion, and capital expenditures totaled $5.9 billion.
Leftovers of Verizon acquisition cover six states, includes spectrum licenses
AT&T has made an agreement with Atlantic Tele-Network Incorporated to acquire its rural wireless business. The purchase of Alltel will cost AT&T $780 million, but it will net the carrier a number of wireless properties, retail locations, network equipment, an extra 585,000 existing subscribers, and also wireless licenses.
Charge partially offset by investment returns, other earnings
AT&T has warned Wall Street and investors that prior to its January 24 quarterly reports report, it will record a $10 billion charge for the quarter on an "accounting shift" related to its pension and post-retirement employee benefit plans. The company reports that its pension was underfunded by more than $10 billion in 2011, with $56 billion in obligations. The offset eclipses the offset it took in 2011 of $6.3 billion.
European acquisition could offer data-focused contracts
American carrier AT&T is looking towards expanding into Europe, according to insiders. The telecommunications giant may be making a bid to buy a mobile phone network, with the likelihood that the company will upgrade older generations of technology and improve the slow rate of 4G rollouts, as well as moving towards more modern pricing structures of contracts.
Puts video calls on iPhone 4S, supporting iPads
(Updated with Free Press intention to file a Net Neutrality complaint for unlimited data plan omission) Following up on a silent rollout, AT&T has formally announced plans to enable FaceTime calls with any tiered data plan. The carrier previously lifted a policy restricting FaceTime to Mobile Share plans, but still required a device with a tiered plan and LTE, blocking out the iPhone 4S. "We have already begun updating our systems and processes and expect to start rolling the update out to customers on an ongoing basis beginning in the next couple of weeks," reads a blog post by AT&T's senior VP for voice and data, Mark Collins.
Credits iPhone, Android, Windows Phone devices
AT&T sold over 10 million smartphones during the last quarter, according to an official announcement. The figure surpasses the carrier's previous record, 9.4 million, achieved during the fourth quarter of 2011. The company is also claiming the "best-ever quarterly sales of Android and Apple smartphones," though it isn't providing a breakdown of unit sales.
Upgrade to AT&T network follows similar by Verizon, T-Mobile
AT&T has rolled out its 4G LTE network in 15 new markets in the United States, and expanded network coverage in a number of already-live locations. Ten have gone live today, while five others were launched earlier this week -- pushing the total overall number of markets AT&T's 4G LTE network is operational in to 124.
Google Fiber tops Verizon FiOS, Comcast
For the first time, Netflix has published data on ISP streaming performance, showing that Google Fiber significantly outperforms its other nationally-active competitors. Netflix's figures give the average speed at which customers of different ISPs can download movies, and it notes whether ISPs have moved up or down in the rankings in the last month. Google Fiber leads the pack with 2.55MBps, with Verizon's FiOS and Comcast significantly behind.
Discount available for largest carriers
Best Buy has rolled out its latest holiday promotion, slashing $50 off iPhone 5, iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 pricing. New or upgrade-eligible subscribers can now pick up a 16GB iPhone 5 for $150 with a two-year contract, while the iPhone 4S currently starts at $50. The discounts include both white and black variants connected to Verizon, Sprint and AT&T.
Discount applies to all capacities
Electronics retailer RadioShack has launched a temporary sale on AT&T models of the iPhone 5. From today until December 15th, the company offering a $20 discount; that puts the price of a 16GB phone as low as $180. The same $20 can be taken off the costs of 32 and 64GB phones.
Rollout of 4G LTE-Advanced promises 100Mbps connection speeds
AT&T may start rolling out its LTE-Advanced network in the second half of 2013 if a rumor is to be believed. If correct, it would see AT&T effectively catching up to Verizon's LTE lead with the next generation of 4G access, with potential average download speeds of 100Mbps being quoted for the technology.
Revision not being pushed, manual update required
As expected, the Android 4.1.1 Jelly Bean update is now available for owners of the Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone on AT&T. The software, while available now, and is not being pushed out to users at this time. Galaxy S III owners are required to install the update through the Samsung Kies application, but won't be sent notifications that they are eligible for the upgrade at present.
Deal online-only, requires two-year contract
US carrier AT&T has begun selling refurbished models of the iPhone 5 at a $100 discount. The deal is online-only, and still requires signing up for a two-year contract, as with new models. The cut lowers the 16GB iPhone 5 down to $100, the 32GB to $200, and the 64GB to $300. Black and white options are available.
People with iPhone 4S or unlimited plans now reporting access
In spite of earlier statements by the carrier, AT&T appears to be extending cellular FaceTime to all compatible devices on its network, note forum posters at MacRumors. It had been announced that while cellular FaceTime would no longer be restricted to Mobile Share plans, the option would still require a tiered data plan and a device with LTE. By definition that would block the iPhone 4S and/or anyone on a grandfathered unlimited plan; anything earlier than the 4S is unsupported because of Apple's own restrictions in iOS 6.
Black Friday deal knocks Lumia 920 to $50
[Update: promotion is limited to certain states] AT&T revealed its "Black Friday" sales specials today, dropping the price on Nokia's Lumia 920 to just $50 on contract. In order to make up the difference in price for early adopters, who paid $100 for the device, the carrier also appears to be crediting those customers' accounts $50.