AT&T making moves to 'reduce reliance' on Apple's iPhone

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
AT&T will be the only U.S. wireless carrier to offer smartphones with every major operating system this holiday season, as the company attempts to diversify its portfolio beyond the iPhone, which is rumored to arrive on rival carrier Verizon's network in early 2011.



The exclusive carrier of the iPhone in the U.S. is adding new handsets running operating systems from Apple's rivals, including Google Android and Microsoft Windows 7. It is also retraining staff in its stores to sell the new non-Apple smartphones for the holiday season, according to Bloomberg.



"AT&T Inc., facing the possible loss of its hold on the iPhone, is adding handsets at an accelerating clip and retraining store staff to help reduce reliance on its top-selling smartphone during the holidays," author Greg Bensinger wrote.



AT&T also touted during its quarterly earnings call this week that more than half of its new customers chose a phone other than the iPhone. The addition of new phones running Windows Phone 7 and Google Android comes as rumors suggest AT&T will lose its exclusive iPhone deal in early 2011, and Apple's handset will become available on Verizon.



Earlier this month, The Wall Street Journal lent strong support to those rumors, claiming that Apple plans to begin mass production of a new CDMA, Verizon-compatible iPhone by the end of 2010. Apple and Verizon also recently announced the wireless carrier will sell the iPad, bundled with a MiFi portable 3G hotspot, in its retail stores beginning later this month.



Jeff Bradley, AT&T devices senior vice president, told Bloomberg that his company's changes are not meant to protect against the end of iPhone exclusivity. He said the carrier plans to carry the iPhone for the "foreseeable future," even after exclusivity expires, though he didn't say when that would happen.



AT&T's stores will reportedly have a "cleaner" look for the holidays, as the carrier is retraining about 25,000 salespeople on the new lineup of phones it will carry this fall. The carrier will also run a promotion among salespeople, offering them a free handset if they can be among the first few thousand to sell four of the latest models.



AT&T has been the exclusive carrier of the iPhone since the handset first launched in 2007. Since then, it has been a large part of the company's success.



This week, AT&T revealed it sold 5.2 million iPhones in the last quarter, and 1.25 million of those were new customers. That's just less than half of the total 2.6 million new customers AT&T added during the three-month period.
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Comments

  • applappl Posts: 348member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    AT&T will be the only U.S. wireless carrier to offer smartphones with every major operating system this holiday season, as the company attempts to diversify its portfolio beyond the iPhone, which is rumored to arrive on rival carrier Verizon's network in early 2011.




    Maybe, but their Android lineup is pathetic.
  • ipad999ipad999 Posts: 27member
    I like!
  • anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 17,187member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by appl View Post


    Maybe, but their Android lineup is pathetic.



    As of Jan 2011 (or whenever it comes out on Verizon), we'll finally get to see real head-to-head competition between iOS and Android.



    I have my priors as to who will win.
  • crunchcrunch Posts: 180member
    Every article sounds like AT&T will be doomed once it "loses" the iPhone. It will not lose it at all. it will just not be the only carrier to be allowed to sell it anymore. I, for one, am sticking with AT&T. For about two weeks, I've been getting double the downlink speeds in the middle of densely populated Los Angeles. My new average is between 4 and 6Mbps, when the old overage wasn't bad either. We should see even better speeds once there are fewer users with bandwidth-sucking iPhones on the network and HSPA+ rolls out. Not that I wish AT&T ill. I can dig those speeds.
  • daylove22daylove22 Posts: 215member
    I am not leaving At&t either. I was with Verizon for 2 years and never again. At&t is fast in Vegas.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Crunch View Post


    Every article sounds like AT&T will be doomed once it "loses" the iPhone. It will not lose it at all. it will just not be the only carrier to be allowed to sell it anymore. I, for one, am sticking with AT&T. For about two weeks, I've been getting double the downlink speeds in the middle of densely populated Los Angeles. My new average is between 4 and 6Mbps, when the old overage wasn't bad either. We should see even better speeds once there are fewer users with bandwidth-sucking iPhones on the network and HSPA+ rolls out. Not that I wish AT&T ill. I can dig those speeds.



  • beakernx01beakernx01 Posts: 56member
    Gee, AT&T gets to flaunt all these other smartphones while Apple's hands are tied until 2011. Seems to me, AT&T's behavior must void some part of the exclusivity agreement. I agree though, AT&T will be fine, considering how many iPhone users are under contract for a year or two more. The most important thing is competition in the smartphone (all of them) service plan market. iPhone have paid a premium for service because, unless you went to a non-Apple handset, you only had one choice. With more choices of carrier, hopefully competition will put some pressure on these high rate plans and data plans.
  • turley mullerturley muller Posts: 108member
    80%+ of AT&T smartphone activations last quarter were iPhones. More than half of all AT&T's handset activations were iPhones last quarter. Almost 30M since 2007



    I think AT&T is seeking to find out if it sales staff still has a pulse. That hasn't really been tested three years. AT&T gets a huge portion of iPhone activations from Apple Retail/Online stores. AT&T will no longer have the comfort of knowing every time somebody wants to buy and iPhone it benefits by default.
  • dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,512member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by beakernx01 View Post


    Gee, AT&T gets to flaunt all these other smartphones while Apple's hands are tied until 2011. Seems to me, AT&T's behavior must void some part of the exclusivity agreement. I agree though, AT&T will be fine, considering how many iPhone users are under contract for a year or two more. The most important thing is competition in the smartphone (all of them) service plan market. iPhone have paid a premium for service because, unless you went to a non-Apple handset, you only had one choice. With more choices of carrier, hopefully competition will put some pressure on these high rate plans and data plans.



    You make no sense. Is ATT not allowed to make money on other phones? In fact it's better if someone gets a smartphone other than a iPhone, the subsidy is much less thus making them more money for the life of the contract, so it make perfect sense to push those other devices.



    It's gonna be interesting to see the iPhone ads if and when it goes multi carrier. Apple will tout that fact and there's nothing ATT can do about it.
  • blackintoshblackintosh Posts: 479member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    As of Jan 2011 (or whenever it comes out on Verizon), we'll finally get to see real head-to-head competition between iOS and Android.



    I have my priors as to who will win.



    Hopefully it will be the consumer who wins, not some rich telecom company. Honestly, how do people end up being fanboys of and rooting for some corporation?



    Go BP???
  • digitalclipsdigitalclips Posts: 15,542member
    So in reality, they are preparing to make less money ...
  • applappl Posts: 348member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


    You make no sense. Is ATT not allowed to make money on other phones? In fact it's better if someone gets a smartphone other than a iPhone, the subsidy is much less thus making them more money for the life of the contract, so it make perfect sense to push those other devices.



    It's gonna be interesting to see the iPhone ads if and when it goes multi carrier. Apple will tout that fact and there's nothing ATT can do about it.



    When one considers that the vast majority of phones sold by ATT are NOT iPhones, the comments you quoted make even less sense.



    ATT sales associates now asleep? Yeah. I somehow think that the dreamlike state is rampant in some quarters, but not at ATT.
  • mofromofro Posts: 10member
    I'm still wondering when they are going to carry a decent NON-smartphone. I've been wanting to transfer my daughters' phone over from verizon, and doesn't need a smartphone (along with the data plan).....yet.
  • tokoloshtokolosh Posts: 97member
    It will be interesting to see how the Verizon data plans shake out. I have stayed with my grandfathered, unlimited data plan and will probably keep it as long as possible. I'd occasionally go over the offered limited plans and if by some miracle Facetime is offered over 3g someday (pipe dream, I know) I'd probably be over the limited plans monthly.
  • applappl Posts: 348member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Blackintosh View Post


    Honestly, how do people end up being fanboys of and rooting for some corporation?



    ??





    Marketing. It makes certain people identify their own being with products. They rely upon product selection to communicate to others that they have good taste, or have lots of money, or whatever image they have swallowed from the marketing campaign.



    Therefore, they have a vested interest in the marketing image of the product. Hence the distress when, for example, the iPad started to be sold at Mall*Wart. Those types went from being members of a cool, exclusive club to being hoi polloi - overnight.
  • ghostface147ghostface147 Posts: 1,629member
    I still feel that a Verizon iPhone won't come out until the regular refresh in the summer. It may be announced in early 11, but that's it.
  • kakeroatkakeroat Posts: 17member
    If iphone is going to verizon. then this is right business strategy
  • technotechno Posts: 595member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    It is also retraining staff in its stores to sell the new non-Apple smartphones for the holiday season, according to Bloomberg.



    ...



    AT&T's stores will reportedly have a "cleaner" look for the holidays, as the carrier is retraining about 25,000 salespeople on the new lineup of phones it will carry this fall. The carrier will also run a promotion among salespeople, offering them a free handset if they can be among the first few thousand to sell four of the latest models.




    In case people don't know the obvious, don't trust sales people to give you fair advice. Their motivation is to steer you towards the product they want to sell, not the one best suited for you. I know this is a no brainer, but I am always amazed how often I overhear some sales jerk feeding a bunch of lies to a poor unsuspecting mom or elderly person.
  • kozchriskozchris Posts: 206member
    I think AT&T just wants to sell the phones they don't have to subsidize as much.
  • a1anga1ang Posts: 10member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post


    I still feel that a Verizon iPhone won't come out until the regular refresh in the summer. It may be announced in early 11, but that's it.



    If they do announce a Verizon iPhone in january and not ship until summer, they will really freeze up smartphone sales at Verizon. This is not the the same market that the first iPhone was sold into. I don't think Verizon could afford this kind of delay.
  • dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,512member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by appl View Post


    When one considers that the vast majority of phones sold by ATT are NOT iPhones, the comments you quoted make even less sense.



    ATT sales associates now asleep? Yeah. I somehow think that the dreamlike state is rampant in some quarters, but not at ATT.



    I make perfect sense. Out of 2.6 million new subscribers 1.2 were iPhones. That's hardly a vast majority. Now out of smartphones the iPhone was 65% of new activations now that's a vast majority.
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