Sprint just had a pretty bad day, sending its stock down 5 percent after some troubling news. The Wall Street Journal reports an FCC official confirmed the regulatory body is preparing to fine Sprint, the nation’s third-largest mobile carrier, a record $105 million after allegations it charged consumers for unwanted text message alerts and other services. Read More
AT&T announced a new promotion today regarding its Mobile Share Value plans. The limited-time offer gives qualified customers 15GB of monthly shareable data, for the price of 10GB, which typically runs $100 per month plus device access charges.
The change puts AT&T’s 15GB plan on-par price-wise with Verizon’s 15GB More Everything share plan, which also runs $100 per month plus access charges. These access charges for both plans run $40 per device, unless you subscribe to Next or Edge. Read More
AT&T told the Associated Press on Friday that it is no longer using permanent cookies to track its subscribers. In late October, security researchers discovered that the carrier, along with its competitor Verizon, were using unique identifying numbers or “perma-cookies” to track their customers online habits.
A spokesperson for AT&T said that the tracking practice was part of a pilot program to improve targeted marketing called “Relevant Advertising.” But it says that the experiment is over, and it has pulled the identifying numbers from their customers’ accounts, although it may still sell the data it’s collected. Read More
Heads up to anyone thinking about signing a new plan or equipment contract with Verizon in the near future, it just tweaked its early termination fee (ETF) policy. Spotted by DroidLife, the policy makes it more expensive to cancel your contract with the carrier during the first 8 months.
Previously, Verizon’s ETF with a 2-year contract would decline $10 for each month of the term you completed, so after 8 months your ETF would be 80$ cheaper. But under the new policy, until you complete the 8th month of service, you’d be stuck paying the full $350 ETF for canceling. Read More
AT&T on Friday announced that it is set to acquire Mexican carrier Iusacell for a total of $2.5 billion, including debt. The two companies have entered into an agreement, which will occur once investor group Grupo Salinas completes its own ongoing acquisition of Iusacell.
The plan, AT&T says, is to expand Iusacell coverage beyond its already near-9 million subscriber base in Mexico. The carrier sees a large potential for growth in the country thanks to recent competitive-friendly changes made to wireless regulations by President Peña Nieto. Read More
In a joint press release today, AT&T and Verizon announced their voice over LTE (or VoLTE) interoperability plans for 2015. The companies say they are working to allow customers from the two carriers to make VoLTE calls between each of their networks.
Engineers from Verizon and AT&T have begun extensive testing in lab environments and then plan on moving to field trials. “This approach ensures customers will have a seamless experience making VoLTE HD Voice calls between networks,” the release said. Read More
Sprint is expanding its Spark network, what it calls an enhanced version of LTE, to 17 new cities on Wednesday, including Cleveland, Columbus, Denver, Sacramento, and Seattle. The expansion is part of Sprint’s plan to expand Spark coverage to 100 million people by year-end, and as of today, brings the network technology to 46 markets across the country. Read More
While Tim Cook was speaking over at The Wall Street Journal’s inaugural WSJ.D Live conference, T-Mobile CEO John Legere joined Ina Fried on stage at Recode’s Code/Mobile event earlier this evening. During the interview, the outspoken executive covered a range of interesting topics.
Among those topics was iPhone 6 demand. Legere said that the debut of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus was T-Mobile’s biggest phone launch in company history. He also noted that demand for the larger 6 Plus has been “mind blowing,” accounting for nearly 50% of iPhone 6 mix at one point. Read More
Just a heads up for folks looking to get a Wi-Fi + Cellular version of one of the new iPads. It was discovered on Friday that the awesome new Apple SIM feature, which is supposed to allow you to switch seamlessly between compatible carriers, doesn’t play well with all providers.
More specifically, MacRumors points to an Apple support page that says when you activate your new iPad with AT&T, the carrier dedicates its Apple SIM to their network only. So if you wanted to move the tablet to another provider, you’d have to purchase and install a new SIM. Read More
AT&T is no longer in the business of selling Beats Music subscriptions, reports MacRumors. The site spoke with an employee for the carrier who said he’s been instructed to stop offering the service to customers as a monthly plan add-on.
Additionally, AT&T has pulled all references to Beats Music from its website, and no longer offers the option to sign up for the service when selecting a new phone plan. Beats Music has also removed “Subcribe with AT&T” from its website. Read More
Pre-orders for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus officially began in China today, and it sounds like sales for the two handsets are doing well thus far. Tencent reports that the country’s three major wireless carriers recorded more than 1 million pre-orders during first 6 hours of availability.
There’s been no word on what sales looked like throughout the rest of the day, and the 1M figure doesn’t include orders taken directly by Apple, or its 6,000 authorized resellers. It also doesn’t account for the 9+ million iPhone 6 and 6 Plus reservations that were made last week. Read More
The US government has just handed AT&T a significant fine for allowing third party companies to stealthily tack on their charges to customer phone bills for things like spam SMS text messages. The announcement was made on Wednesday in a joint press conference by the FCC and FTC, who say this is the largest “cramming” settlement in history.
In total, AT&T will pay out $105 million to settle the case—$80 million is earmarked for the FTC, which it will use to set up a reimbursement program, $5 million will go to the FCC, and $20 million will go to individual states. Additionally, the carrier has been ordered to begin proactively informing subscribers if extra fees are going on their accounts. Read More
AT&T confirmed on Monday that it suffered a data breach in August, carried out by one of its own employees. In a letter to Vermont’s attorney general, officials for the carrier said a former staffer accessed customer account information, including Social Security and driver’s license numbers.
Additionally, the company notes that the insider viewed Customer Proprietary Network Information (or CPNI), which includes metadata such as time, duration and destination of phone calls. It would not identify, however, how many of its customer accounts were affected by the breach. Read More
It looks like Verizon Wireless won’t be throttling the LTE speeds of remaining unlimited data customers after all. In a statement to The Verge this afternoon, the carrier says it has “decided not to move forward with the planned implementation of network optimization for 4G LTE customers on unlimited plans.”
Verizon announced its plan to throttle LTE for select unlimited data customers in July, as part of its ‘network optimization’ strategy. The decision was met with a large amount of criticism from consumers, as well as FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who demanded further explanation for the move from the carrier. Read More
We’re almost there, folks! After months of rumors, speculations, and leaks from “sources familiar with the matter,” iPhone 6 will be launching tomorrow Friday at 8am. For many of us, this is arguably one of the most exciting days of the year. If you have pre-ordered your iPhone 6, then you’ll likely be waiting for it from the comfort of your home, or maybe it will just be waiting for you at the door when you come back from work.
But for those of us who haven’t pre-ordered and opted to get in line to pick up an iPhone 6, some decisions have to be made, and a game plan has to be drawn. Today, I’ll share with you some of the things I’ve learned from waiting in line for an Apple product several years in a row. This is not rocket science, but it might as well be. Read More
AT&T announced this afternoon that, starting today, both new and existing subscribers are eligible for a $100 bill credit when activating a new line of service with a smartphone on Next—AT&T’s upgrade program that allows customers to get new devices on installment plans.
More specifically, the Next program allows qualifying customers to get a new mobile device for $0 down, without upgrade or activation fees, and no annual contract. The cost of the equipment is spread over a two-year term, which makes this $100 promo somewhat appealing. Read More
Now that the T-Mobile-Sprint merger is off, it looks like the race is on for the definitive third place spot in the ranks of US carriers. Sprint fired the first shot with its new ‘Family Share Pack’ plan, and today, T-Mobile responded.
The magenta carrier announced today a new promotion that will benefit both current and new customers. Starting next week, the company will start giving away one free year of unlimited LTE data for referrals and switchers… Read More
Sprint this afternoon announced the ‘Sprint Family Share Pack,’ a new shared-data plan that offers double the high-speed data of its two largest competitors, at a cheaper price. The plan, which will become available later this week, will enable customers to have as many as 10 mobile phone lines share 20 gigabytes of data for just $100 a month. More details below… Read More
It looks like Verizon isn’t the only carrier planning to throttle select unlimited LTE customers in the near future. A leaked internal memo surfaced today, confirming that T-Mobile will also begin slowing down the connections of some of its subscribers later this month.
According to the memo, throttling will only apply to heavy data users that are using their connection for peer-to-peer file sharing and unapproved tethering. Like Verizon, the carrier claims the move is part of a larger effort to improve its overall network performance… Read More
It appears that Sprint may have some new competition in the T-Mobile suitors club. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that French telecom Iliad has offered to buy T-Mobile U.S., putting in a bid of $15 billion cash for a majority 56.6% stake in the carrier.
Like T-Mobile in the United States, Iliad is the fourth largest wireless provider in France. Founded by billionaire French entrepreneur Xavier Niel, the company has climbed its way to the top by offering better pricing and customer service than the competition… Read More