AT&T

Breaking down the iPhone 6s model numbers and LTE band capabilities

Apple is shipping four different models of iPhone for its yearly refresh. The iPhone 6s sports two models—A1633 and A1688, while the iPhone 6s Plus feature models A1634 and A1687.

Although both iPhones in the 6s and 6s Plus lines are virtually the same, the model numbers differentiate the cellular LTE band capabilities of each phone. Thus, by familiarizing yourself with each model number, you can learn what networks each phone will support.

Why is this important? Say you wanted to order a new iPhone 6s in rose gold. As you might have heard, rose gold is proving to be very popular, and is selling out quicker than some of the other iPhone color options. Rose gold 64GB iPhones designated for T-Mobile and Verizon are now on backorder for 2-3 weeks.

But some rose gold models remain available—for example, some Sprint-designated rose gold models are still shipping on 9/25. By using our knowledge of iPhone model numbers, we might still be able to obtain a rose gold iPhone 6s to use with a provider like T-Mobile or Verizon by purchasing the Sprint model…

AT&T cutting prices of shared data plans and unveiling new ones tomorrow

U.S. wireless carrier AT&T announced this morning a few notable changes coming to its shared-data plans beginning tomorrow. For starters, customers on existing Mobile Share Value Plans with fifteen and twenty gigabytes of cellular data will now pay less for their high-speed 4G LTE data: the 15GB plan will drop from $130 to $100 per month while the 20GB tier will go from $150 down to $140 per month.

AT&T Wi-Fi calling rolling out to some iOS 9 beta users

AT&T on Tuesday began rolling out support for Wi-Fi calling to some iPhone users running iOS 9 beta 5. The feature was added when that beta was released to developers last week, but testers on the AT&T network are only just now able to activate it.

For those unfamiliar with Wi-Fi calling, it allows iPhone users to place phone calls over Wi-Fi instead of their cellular network. The feature was first activated for T-Mobile in iOS 8, and users have reported better call quality and improved battery life.

AT&T jacking up activation fees beginning August 1

U.S. carrier AT&T is going to increase activation fee for both contract subscribers and new Next customers, Droid-Life reported Wednesday. Upgrade fee will rise to $45 for those signing up for a one or two-year contract versus the previous $40 activation fee, the publication has learned from sources. As if that weren’t enough, the carrier will impose an all-new $15 activation fee on Next and Bring-Your-Own-Phone customers beginning August 1.

AT&T fined $100 million by FCC over unlimited data throttling

The US Federal Communications Commission announced plans on Wednesday to fine AT&T $100 million for unsuitable throttling practices. The Commission issued a press release on its website this morning proclaiming the decision, charging the carrier with violating the ‘2010 Open Internet Transparency Rule.’

The move comes as the result of an in-depth investigation, where the FCC found that AT&T—the second largest wireless provider in the US—had not adequately informed its customers with unlimited data plans that it would be dramatically slowing down their Internet access once they crossed a particular threshold.

Apple Stores to drop AT&T iPhone subsidy, increase trade-in value of older iPhones

Both online and brick-and-mortar Apple Stores around the country are about to drop subsidies for iPhone models sold through carrier AT&T. Moreover, Apple is said to increase trade-in price value of older iPhone models just a little bit, according to a pair of reports Monday (here and here) by 9to5Mac.

Beginning this month, trade-in values for iPhone 4s, iPhone 5 and iPhone 5s models will increase by $15, or $25 in the case of used iPhone 5s devices.

AT&T pulling back on throttling of unlimited LTE customers

AT&T is pulling back on its throttling efforts against unlimited LTE customers, reports ArsTechnica. The site noticed that the carrier recently changed its policy to say that it will only throttle users with unlimited LTE data plans who have both exceeded 5GB in a billing cycle and are in an area experiencing network congestion.

Previously, AT&T’s policy said that unlimited LTE users could experience slower data speeds after reaching 5GB, with no mention of location. The change comes after customers complained the carrier’s throttling—some reported speeds as slow as 0.5Mbps—was part of its strategy to sway them away from their unlimited plans.

Sprint will pay what it costs for you to switch carriers

Sprint really wants your business. Not only will it cut your bill in half, but now the nation’s fourth-largest carrier will pay the early termination fee and any remaining payments at its competitors for you to come over to its network.

The early termination fee is why many customers don’t make the switch from one carrier to another. In many cases, the fee is required to be paid to end the two-year contract carriers like to lock you into.

Unlocking your iPhone gets a little bit easier today

The process of unlocking your iPhone became a little bit easier today in the United States. Today marks the deadline for wireless carriers to adopt the unlocking standards of the late-2013 agreement set forth by the CTIA.

The agreement is industry-wide, and mandates that carriers adhere to 6 rules including clearly posting their unlocking policies online, and offering to unlock postpaid handsets once the customer’s contract has expired.

AT&T to acquire Nextel Mexico for $1.88 billion, building out ‘North American Mobile Service’

AT&T is getting another Nextel brand under its name.

AT&T announced on Monday it’s acquiring Nextel Mexico for $1.88 billion, marking the second carrier in the region it’s purchased this month.

AT&T is acquiring Nextel Mexico’s spectrum licenses, network assets, retail stores and approximately 3 million subscribers. The network covers 76 million people, giving AT&T lots of room to grow in Mexico.