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

post #1 of 36
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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.
post #2 of 36
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.
post #3 of 36
I like!
post #4 of 36
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.
post #5 of 36
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.

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post #6 of 36
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.

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post #7 of 36
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.
post #8 of 36
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.
post #9 of 36
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.
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post #10 of 36
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???
post #11 of 36
So in reality, they are preparing to make less money ...
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post #12 of 36
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.
post #13 of 36
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.
post #14 of 36
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.
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post #15 of 36
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.
post #16 of 36
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.
post #17 of 36
If iphone is going to verizon. then this is right business strategy
post #18 of 36
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.

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post #19 of 36
I think AT&T just wants to sell the phones they don't have to subsidize as much.
post #20 of 36
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.
post #21 of 36
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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post #22 of 36
Maybe others have seen this but I can walk into any Union Wireless location and buy a new iphone, I wonder if there are other "local" wireless locales that are selling it.

By "local" I am referring to the entire state of Wyoming....just about everything in Wyoming is anything but "local."
post #23 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by a1ang View Post

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.

It may not even be in January. It could be late March/early April.
post #24 of 36
I am glad AT&T is focusing on smart phones other than the iPhone. There are a lot of people out there me being one of them who do not want an iPhone but have to or want to stay with AT&T.
AT&T pretty much carriered crap non-iPhone smart phone except for the blackberry.

It is nice to see AT&T to focus on something other than blackberry and iPhone.
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post #25 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by appl View Post

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.

Nice childish rants both of you, but consider too that some of us are shareholders in Apple and, yeah, we want to see an Apple win in the iOS v. Android competition.
post #26 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

So in reality, they are preparing to make less money ...

The honeymoon is over. Apple wants an "open relationship" from now on, and they'll get it.

But the real news is that iPhone is finally breaking into the Verizon's protected Android enclave.
The fox will enter the henhouse with the usual results.

Android isn't doing nearly as well overseas as iOS is (Android - 26%, iOS - 40% as of June 2010.)
And that is mostly due to the fact that few international carriers have an exclusive on iPhone.
There are fewer places for Android to run and hide internationally, and soon the same
situation will be true in the US.

But cheer up, fandroids. Apple isn't the bad guy here. Android is doomed anyway, thanks to the
Oracle lawsuit. It's airtight. It's got legal precedent behind it. And Larry won't settle out of court.

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post #27 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post

The honeymoon is over. Apple wants an "open relationship" from now on, and they'll get it.

But the real news is that iPhone is finally breaking into the Verizon's protected Android enclave.
The fox will enter the henhouse with the usual results.

Android isn't doing nearly as well overseas as iOS is (Android - 26%, iOS - 40% as of June 2010.)
And that is mostly due to the fact that few international carriers have an exclusive on iPhone.
There are fewer places for Android to run and hide internationally, and soon the same
situation will be true in the US.

But cheer up, fandroids. Apple isn't the bad guy here. Android is doomed anyway, thanks to the
Oracle lawsuit. It's airtight. It's got legal precedent behind it. And Larry won't settle out of court.

Android doomed??? You are out of your mind. It is the fastest growing OS here in the US, they will get past this lawsuit and continue to grow at record passes.
post #28 of 36
3Q Results

ATT added 2.6 million new customers.
Verizon added almost 1 million new customers.

Of those 2.6 million that AT&T added, only 1.25 were new iPhone customers. So, take away the iPhone factor, and 1.35 million customers joined AT&T last quarter buying the same phones that Verizon offers....well above Verizon's total of 1 million.

There are a few people on this forum who will always hate AT&T, but apparently the average consumer does not.....in fact more people prefer AT&T over Verizon.
post #29 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by noexpectations View Post

3Q Results

ATT added 2.6 million new customers.
Verizon added almost 1 million new customers.

Of those 2.6 million that AT&T added, only 1.25 were new iPhone customers. So, take away the iPhone factor, and 1.35 million customers joined AT&T last quarter buying the same phones that Verizon offers....well above Verizon's total of 1 million.

There are a few people on this forum who will always hate AT&T, but apparently the average consumer does not.....in fact more people prefer AT&T over Verizon.

But out of those people, a big portion of those are prepaid subscribers.

Q2+Q3 combined

AT&T has 1.250 million postpaid net adds
Verizon has 1.249 million postpaid net adds.

Since the iphone 4 was launched, the carrier with the iphone 4 has a 1000 postpaid subscriber advantage over the carrier without the iphone 4.
post #30 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by a1ang View Post

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.

Android is pretty close to iOS these days. Some people will delay buying a smartphone and wait, but I don't believe the majority will. Verizon's smartphone business will not freeze up.
post #31 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by Psych_guy View Post

Nice childish rants both of you, but consider too that some of us are shareholders in Apple and, yeah, we want to see an Apple win in the iOS v. Android competition.

Most of you are NOT. Meaning, his post is correct and DOES apply, to MOST people reading this.
post #32 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZBack View Post

Android doomed??? You are out of your mind. It is the fastest growing OS here in the US, they will get past this lawsuit and continue to grow at record passes.

Its not the fastest growing anything. You have to tie together a largely fragmented OS, from dozens of different versions, until you decide what a hypothetical Android OS actually is, then you make up the numbers based on everything with the Android trademark.

Its completely ridiculous and doesn't lend any credence to a growth argument. I'd be more than happy to entertain a discussion on how Android is doing vs. iOS. Unfortunately it can't happen, because iOS actually exists (as one identifiable thing) and "Android OS" does not. Its multiple things. On way too many phones, at way too many price points to establish any consistency.

Its a joke, in other words.

Show me ONE phone running Android that costs $199 and tell me how that does compared to the iPhone. Other than that, I don't care, and really shouldn't.
post #33 of 36
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.

I just got a mailer in from AT&T offering all sorts of new crap phones. They have never written to me before, since I had an iPhone. That seems to be abusing their mail list of iPhone users .. as you say you'd think it would be a breach of their agreement,
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post #34 of 36
another band-aid from this company.

once again, they're scrambling to hold on to the customers they already have, rather than fix the real problemtheir infrastructure. if they had put some of their profits back into their company, they wouldn't be in this mess in the first place.

what a bunch of dinosaurs.
post #35 of 36
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZBack View Post

Android doomed??? You are out of your mind. It is the fastest growing OS here in the US, they will get past this lawsuit and continue to grow at record passes.

But Google will suck the mobile ad life out of Android, release a full mobile version of ChromeOS and retire Android from active support. Android was a stop-gap convenience to keep Apple from dominating mobile ad revenue with the App Store and iAds and let Google establish their mobile ad market - nothing more. Understand?

Again - this is Business 101. For all the Google cheerleading for "FREEDOM" and "OPEN" - it was emotional fodder for the clueless and naif fandroid supporters, who will be severely disillusioned when Google drops the drained husk of the Android community and eyes the customer base they will build on ChromeOS.
post #36 of 36
Maybe in preparation for the end of iPhone exclusivity contract?
Hope Apple will sell the iPhone factory unlocked after the exclusivity expires.
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