Sprint, T-Mobile leave devices open
The new Apple SIM in the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 is being locked to AT&T if data subscribers choose that carrier, according to complaints. The problem is confirmed by a new Apple support document, which says that when buyers "choose AT&T on iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3, AT&T dedicates Apple SIM to [that] network only."
Carrier pulls $33 billion in revenue, added over 2 million mobile, broadband customers
AT&T's quarterly results fell short of industry projections when the company announced $32.9 billion in revenue for the third quarter of 2014. The resulting earnings per share (EPS) was $0.63, missing the projected $0.64 EPS on $33.25 billion in revenue. While the company may have missed projections, it announced that it picked up more than two million mobile and broadband customers.
Confidential programming agreements requested in early October source of the delay
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has stopped its "180-day informal time clock" in the review of the merger proposals for Comcast and Time Warner Cable, as well as AT&T and DirectTV. The reason for the stoppage involves the modified joint protective orders that the FCC created at the beginning of October, which content companies are now using to bar outside sources from reading confidential programming agreements.
Combined smartphone, tablet dock package going on sale in US from October 24th
The Asus PadFone X mini is heading to the United States later this month, with AT&T set to be the exclusive carrier for the device. Effectively a smaller version of the PadFone X, the PadFone X mini uses a 4.5-inch IPS smartphone at its core, with the smartphone component able to be docked inside a larger seven-inch tablet section, increasing the screen size while reusing the phone's processor and other internals.
International plans come with data, tiered voice as alternative to monthly Global plans
AT&T has launched a new option for travelers wanting to take their smartphones, tablets, or laptops with them abroad. A new set of tiered, one-time charge packages called AT&T Passport can now be added to an existing account, allowing customers to use their devices in over 150 different countries. The plans are designed to work in addition to domestic plans, while offering fixed rates and small data caps for international travel.
Procedures created to protect public interest, alleviate media firm confidentiality concerns
In the review of the proposed mergers between Comcast and Time Warner Cable, or the proposed AT&T-DirecTV deal, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) believes that reviewing the contracts and agreements made by the merger applicants and media companies is important. Last month, the FCC requested that media firms turn over information about deals with Comcast, something that the provider and media companies fought back on. However, the FCC now has plans in place to address some of their concerns in both mergers.
FTC settlement involves providing refunds to customers affected by premium SMS subscriptions
AT&T has been hit with a $105 million fine for allowing "premium" SMS subscriptions and other charges to be applied to customer accounts, a practice known as "cramming." The carrier has settled with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over the charges, with the majority of the settlement devoted to paying back affected customers.
Verizon matches AT&T data promotion, Sprint increases data cap more
AT&T's recent promotional offer to double the data caps on its Mobile Share Value plans seems to have struck a nerve with other carriers. Both Verizon and Sprint have announced their own data-doubling promotions just a few days after AT&T -- and while Verizon appears to match AT&T's allowances and prices, Sprint has opted to go further, by redoubling the caps.
Value plans now offer up to 100GB of data, only expire if changed after promotion
The never ending race for data cap superiority continues, AT&T has announced a limited-time offer that increases the data for its Mobile Share Value plans. Beginning today, AT&T is doubling the data included in the plans starting at the 15GB level. Where a 30GB plan was previously $225 a month, AT&T is now offering it for $130 until October 31.
DirecTV internal issues now resolved, all that remains is US Government approval
As part of the process towards a purchase by AT&T, DirecTV shareholders have voted nearly unanimously in favor of the acquisition. Votes representing 77 percent of all outstanding shares have been cast, with 99 percent of them in favor of proceeding with the merger. Discussion amongst US regulatory bodies is continuing, but the shareholder vote was potentially a major issue, now overcome.
AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon to carry 3G-enabled Gear S
Samsung has confirmed it will be releasing the Gear S smartwatch in the United States. Launched last month, the standalone smartwatch with a curved two-inch 360x480 Super AMOLED display will be heading to AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, and Verizon sometime this fall, though the manufacturer has yet to confirm exactly when it will be available.
Bundle combines HBO, HBO Go with local TV channels, Internet
AT&T is following Comcast's lead, in offering a basic service aimed at cord-cutters. The bundle combines a basic television service with Internet at a relatively low cost, and while it copies Comcast in providing HBO and HBO Go under the subscription, it also unusually adds in one year of free Amazon Prime deliveries and Prime Instant Video.
Metal phone launching for $200 on contract, comes with 2.5GHz processor
AT&T and Samsung released a joint statement today, announcing that the metal Samsung Alpha would be making its way to the US carrier as an exclusive. The launch of the phone is coming on September 26, with AT&T selling with a two-year contract, as a part of the AT&T Next program and as a full-price purchase without commitment.
United Kingdom gains Note 4 one week earlier than United States
The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is being made available for pre-order in the United States tomorrow, with shipments expected to start on October 17th, though AT&T plans to ship the smartphone earlier on October 14th. In the United Kingdom, pre-orders also begin tomorrow, though the stylus-equipped phablet will be on sale from October 10th.
LTE Shield tablet certified for AT&T LTE network
Pre-orders for a version of the Shield gaming tablet with LTE have opened in the United States and Europe. Coming after the Wi-Fi model's release and set to ship on September 30th for both continents, the LTE version adds cellular connectivity, with the mobile device claimed to be certified for AT&T's LTE network, though the unlocked version will also work with a number of other carriers.
AT&T to follow T-Mobile, Sprint in providing Wi-Fi calling capabilities
AT&T will be bringing Wi-Fi calling to its network, though customers will have to wait until 2015. The president and CEO of AT&T's Mobile and Business Solutions group Ralph de la Vega claimed that the technology will be made available to customers, but not until the carrier has worked to prevent calls from dropping on the service.
Company declines to give specifics
Overnight preorders of the iPhone 6 achieved "record" numbers, an Apple spokesperson claims. The company is not, however, offering specific figures. A similar statement has been issued by AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel, who says that preorder demand is higher than any time in the past two years. Apple and all of the major US carriers are believed to have sold out of their initial preorder stock for the 5.5-inch 6 Plus, resulting in shipping times stretching out to 3-4 weeks.
Includes Apple, major carriers
[Updated with in-store pickup news] In the US, online preorders for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus will begin at 12:01AM Pacific time Friday morning. While Apple has yet to announce an exact hour, AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon all have, and traditionally Apple has opened up preorders at the same time. Other vendors, like T-Mobile, are referencing a broad September 12 window.
Lack of AT&T exclusivity of budget Fire Phone in US allegedly at issue
AT&T may have prevented Amazon from creating a second, lower-cost smartphone, according to a report. The retailer was apparently working with HTC on such a device, but the carrier was apparently unhappy with the terms of the partnership, wanting exclusivity of both devices in the United States, rather than just of the higher-specification Fire Phone.
AT&T announces cost of second year of data plan for Timex Ironman One GPS+
AT&T has announced second-year data pricing for the Timex Ironman One GPS+ smartwatch. Originally announced in August, the Timex smartwatch offers stand-alone wireless connectivity without a phone, including fitness tracking, a "Find Me Mode" safety function, and more. After the initial year of included data service, AT&T smartwatch users will need to pay $40 for the second year of data and messaging. Pre-ordering for the Timex Ironman One GPS+ is available online for $400, with the product officially available this fall.
Letter to FCC alleges that government owned networks hold undue power
Given the opportunity to petition against the expansion of municipal broadband expansion in Chattanooga, Tennessee and Wilson, North Carolina, AT&T has taken the opportunity to remind the government of its role in the state of Internet connectivity in the US. In its filing with the US Federal Communcations Commission, the telecom giant lays out its case against why local broadband, or "Government-Owned Networks" (GON), shouldn't be allowed.
Suit likely to span years, covers most all of Cox's in-home networking
After what AT&T calls "years of protracted negotiations," it has filed suit against Cox Communications, alleging that the cable company has violated seven patents covering general networking, digital video recorders (DVR), and packet loss mitigation. In a change from "normal" patent suits, AT&T is not seeking sales embargoes, but instead looks for a "compulsory ongoing royalty" for products that use the patents in question.
Verizon, T-Mobile upgrade support only being piloted at retail
Apple's US online store is now offering iPhone shoppers the chance to purchase a device via an AT&T Next upgrade plan, instead of just choosing a two-year contract or going unlocked. Previously, people on a Next plan had to upgrade through AT&T itself. Apple's site provides a chart illustrating the differences between the 12- and 18-month Next plans and going with a regular contract.
Update brings FireOS version 3.5.1, improves battery and ability to create folders
Amazon announced that it is pushing out the first major update for the company's new smartphone, the Fire Phone. The update will be delivered over-the-air for early adopters on AT&T, bringing with it a number of improvements and changes that are said to give the phone better battery life, video sharing and make navigation easier. The update pushes FireOS to version 3.5.1.
Gigabit Internet will become available in Cupertino
AT&T has become the first major telecommunications provider to declare it will offer a gigabit Internet service in Silicon Valley in the future. The high-speed service will roll out in Cupertino, Apple's base of operations, though the company has not yet revealed when it will roll out the network in the area, when it will be available to customers, nor how much it will ultimately cost.
LTE-based broadcasting system due on AT&T next year
AT&T is expecting to start rolling out its LTE Broadcast system next year, an executive has revealed. Also called LTE Multicast, the system would allow AT&T the ability to broadcast one set of content, such as a TV channel or some other form of video content, to multiple subscribers simultaneously, a system which in theory could help AT&T efficiently conserve its network resources.
Carrier likely clearing out stock ahead of next-gen hardware
AT&T has begun a new promotion aimed at people on Next upgrade plans. If a subscriber buys an iPhone 5s or 5c, the carrier is offering $200 off a cellular-equipped iPad. That brings the price of a 16GB cellular Retina Mini down to $329, and an equivalent Air to $429. There are other stipulations as well however, namely that an iPad has to be activated under a two-year wireless agreement on a Mobile Share Value plan or a standalone data plan.
Smartwatch from Timex includes messaging, emergency texting
Watch manufacturer Timex is attempting to enter the smartwatch market, by collaborating with Qualcomm and AT&T. The Ironman One GPS+ aims to provide typical smartwatch and GPS running watch functions, though instead of relying on a Bluetooth connection with a smartphone for data, it will instead use its own cellular connection.
LTE edition of LG G Pad 7.0 goes on sale in US from August 8 on AT&T
AT&T will become the first carrier to sell the LG G Pad 7.0 LTE in the United States, it has announced. Part of the same product family as the G Pad 8.0 and G Pad 10.1, the LTE-equipped G Pad 7.0 will be available to purchase through the carrier from August 8, with AT&T not only offering it as a standalone item, but also heavily discounting it when bought alongside a select number of LG smartphones.
Agreement dates back to May, but wasn't planned to be announced to the public
In the quest to give its users a better streaming experience, Netflix has reached an agreement with AT&T to gain a direct network connection. The two companies revealed that they entered into a peering deal after news broke from anonymous sources that the movie service reached another streaming arrangement. Previously, Netflix had worked out similar deals with Verizon and Comcast.
Company still rolling in cash, pulls down $5.6 billion in income
Communications giant AT&T has released its quarterly earnings report for its second quarter of the fiscal year. AT&T's consolidated revenues totaled $32.6 billion, up 1.6 percent versus the year-earlier period. Compared with results for the second quarter of 2013, operating expenses were $27.0 billion versus $26.0 billion; operating income was $5.6 billion versus $6.1 billion; and operating income margin was 17.2 percent versus 19.1 percent.
Flagship phone comes out on AT&T ahead of competitors, G Watch at discount
LG's new phone, the G3 and the company's first Android Wear entry, the G Watch, will be available to AT&T customers starting tomorrow. While the availability starts as a pre-order for the G3, retail locations are said to offer the devices on July 11. The announcement follows news from Sprint and T-Mobile that they would offer the G3, but AT&T is the first carrier to make it available to consumers.
Rumored Amazon smartphone said to ship just on AT&T in United States
Amazon's rumored smartphone could be exclusive to AT&T, according to the Wall Street Journal and other reports. The mobile device, expected to be launched by the retailer tomorrow, will apparently work with just AT&T in the United States, with the claim apparently lending an answer to an earlier rumor about a Prime Data service plan for the phone.
Court ruling could have impacts on global security
Apple, Cisco, and AT&T have filed amicus curiae briefs in support of Microsoft's appeal of court decision that could force it to turn over email from an Irish customer to US law enforcement. Magistrate Judge James Francis IV ordered Microsoft to supply the data based on the Stored Communications Act, even though the content in question not only belongs to an Irish person but is stored on servers in Dublin. Microsoft has argued that this violates the SCA, international law, and treaties the US has signed that govern how to handle requests for data on foreign citizens.
Increase of $4 makes AT&T most expensive for line activation among major carriers
AT&T has increased the activation fee for new lines taken up by some of its customers. The June 8th increase, from the previous $36 per line to $40, applies to customers signing up for a new two-year commitment with the carrier, with the change in price making AT&T the most expensive carrier to activate a device on out of the four largest in the United States.
Locality one of 100 named by AT&T for future expansion
Winston-Salem, NC City officials ratified an agreement with AT&T to bring gigabit-class Internet access to residents and businesses. AT&T will provide U-verse with GigaPower over a fiber network with speeds capable of up to one gigabit per second. The agreement stemmed from a North Carolina Next Generation Network (NCNGN) initiative, composed of six cities, four universities, and local business leaders working to encourage development of high-speed broadband networks in the state.
Could increase traffic at smaller carriers
Apple's US stores are preparing to do in-store sign-ups for people wanting to put an iPhone on a prepaid or monthly plan, a source says. At the moment, people can buy an unlocked phone at an Apple Store, but they have to use their own SIM or go to a carrier outlet if they don't want to sign up for a contract. Initially Apple is said to be partnering with AT&T and T-Mobile; in the case of the former, stores will reportedly be stocking up on GoPhone activation kits and SIM cards. T-Mobile subscribers will only need the SIM cards already available through Apple.
None of the savings likely to be passed to customers, will fund expansions
In the controversial process of merging with DirecTV, AT&T will have to file a great deal of regulatory paperwork with the federal government. One such document to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has revealed that AT&T believes it can save 20 percent on the cost of acquiring programming for its users. These savings are unlikely to be passed to the customer, and instead will be intended to fund rural broadband programs and other expansions planned by the mega-corporation, should the merger be approved.
Shock-resistant Galaxy S5 Active ships with side convenience key
AT&T has launched the rumored Active variant of the Samsung Galaxy S5 on its network. Taking after the Galaxy S4 Active, the Galaxy S5 Active combines the internals of the Galaxy S5 with a ruggedized body, allowing it to add the US MiL-STD 810G rating for shock, temperature, and altitude to the smartphone's existing IP67-level water and dust-proofing.
Combined PadFone X smartphone, tablet still lacks a shipping date in US
The Asus PadFone X will finally arrive to the United States later this year, with AT&T announcing it will be starting pre-orders for the device from June 6th. The carrier did not reveal exactly when it will start shipping the smartphone and dockable-tablet combination, but it did confirm it will be selling both components together as a bundle.
Conviction tossed on inappropriate venue, Auernheimer demands recompense
The man accused of hacking personal information out of AT&T servers by the federal government, Andrew "weev" Auernheimer, is demanding that the US Government pay 28,296 Bitcoins ($13.9 million at today's exchange rate) for his time in federal custody. Auernheimer wrote on his Twitter account that "it is time, now that the fraud and violence committed against me has been exposed by the appeals process, to begin making amends to me."
Senator is 'skeptical' of the deal that will lead to higher prices, less choice for consumers
Appearing on CNN's New Day, Senator Al Franken (D-MN) voiced his concerns regarding the recent deal that would see AT&T purchasing DirecTV for $48.5 billion. Asked about the mega-merger, Franken pointed out that the deal would likely raise prices further for consumers, and likely treads on antitrust grounds.
Aio Wireless rolled into relaunched Cricket, 3,000 stores refurbished
AT&T has relaunched its Cricket prepaid brand nationally, rolling its existing Aio Wireless brand and services into the prepaid carrier. The new Cricket will provide customers with nation-wide access to AT&T's HPSA+ and 4G LTE network, rather than its previous smaller CDMA network, with customers having a new selection of price plans and devices to use on the service.
Boards of both companies agree unanimously to the deal for $95 per share
Today, AT&T and DirecTV reached an agreement over the acquisition of the satellite provider by one of the nation's largest cellular carriers. The details of the deal, which will come to a total of $49 billion, will see AT&T conducting a stock-and-cash transaction based on the closing value of AT&T's stock on Friday. The deal was agreed upon unanimously by board members on both sides.
Deal's specifics not yet known, rumored to be near $50 billion
AT&T is reportedly ready to announce a deal for satellite communications company DirecTV on Sunday. Allegedly, DirecTV CEO Mike White has told senior executives that the deal with AT&T is finalized, and details are ready to be released to the public. The buyout, rumored to approach $50 billion, will give the combined broadcast entity over 26 million subscribers, rivaling that of Comcast and Time Warner's accumulated subscriber base.
AT&T, Verizon, Comcast dislike idea of ombudsmen monitoring business
Amidst wide concern about today's US Federal Communications Commission vote on Chairman Tom Wheeler's net neutrality proposal, the three major Internet service providers are apparently not pleased as well. AT&T has penned a missive complaining that the potential regulation of Internet providers as a utility would "place a cloud" over innovation and harm customers. Additionally, Verizon believes that the same utility-like regulation, should the ISPs induce the FCC to enact it, would "jeopardize investment and innovation in broadband."
Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Wisconsin first to get AT&T HD Voice
AT&T will start to roll out HD Voice across its cellular network from May 23rd, the company has announced. The service, which will operate on an all-IP Voice over LTE (VoLTE) network, will allow customers to make clearer calls over its network, while at the same time being able to continue to use the device's data connection at 4G LTE speeds.
Letters from both sides of government show bipartisan gridlock on issue
Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler has confirmed that he plans to limit how much spectrum AT&T and Verizon can buy in the 2015 auction of bandwidth reclaimed from TV broadcasters after the shift to digital broadcasting. As with his net neutrality stance, the proposal is drawing heated debate and strong opinions from Congress as well as industry sources.
Two sources claim between $95 - $100 per share for DirecTV
Discussions between AT&T and DirecTV are heating up, according to sources familiar with the matter. Reportedly, AT&T is looking at offering $48 billion for the satellite communications company in the next few weeks. Still to be negotiated are a "break-up" fee if regulators or other forces nix the deal, and the ultimate fate of DirecTV's CEO Mike White after the merger.
Combined company would be nearly the size of Comcast and Time Warner Cable
AT&T has reportedly contacted DirecTV about purchasing the satellite television provider, according to sources familiar with the matter. The deal, if ever pursued to completion, would generate a 26 million user-strong television network, rivaling the size of the combined Comcast and Time Warner Cable giant. A timetable for an offer is unknown.