AT&T’s (T) customers who have long enjoyed unlimited 3G data on their iPhones are in luck: They’ll be able to keep their unlimited data plans when they purchase the iPhone 5 despite the fact that it’s a 4G LTE device. AT&T wireless chief Ralph de la Vega said today that his company would “offer customers the flexibility to keep the iPhone data plans they already have or choose any of our individual or new Mobile Share plans” if they wanted to switch. A company spokesperson confirmed that this will apply to unlimited data plans currently held by AT&T iPhone users. AT&T’s full press release follows below.
AT&T has just officially announced that it’s entering the home automation and security business with its Digital Life suite of services to compete with the likes of Crestron, Lutron, and other noteworthy providers of premium home automation. To deliver the functionality demanded of home automation, an array of connected devices will be provided such as cameras, window and door sensors, smoke, carbon monoxide, motion, and glass break sensors, door locks, thermostats, moisture detection, and appliance power controls.
We’ve just received word of a spicy strategy change, to be enacted this Sunday, that’s sure to please the AT&T iPhone-loving masses. On Easter, select Ma’ Bell customers with iPhones — those off-contract with accounts in good standing — will be able to request a carrier unlock for their device. Once freed, any micro-SIM can be used — provided its carrier’s frequencies are supported — by the smartphone. An AT&T spokesperson was able to confirm that “a policy change concerning iPhones” would indeed be rolled-out on Sunday, but declined to elaborate further. That sound you hear? International Love, being quietly spun from the corner office of Ralph de la Vega.
AT&T is now getting ahold of their throttling plans by laying out the numbers which will get users put into the “reduced data scenario”. Instead of the sliding scale “top 5% of users” which often was people under 2GB, they now have a hard maximum of 3GB for HSPA users like those with iPhones and 5GB for their new LTE offerings. Users will receive a warning the first time but won’t get a notice thereafter.
The Wall Street Journal reports that AT&T is working on a new service that will allow developers of mobile apps and content providers to pay for users data usage charges to the wireless carrier.
John Donovan – AT&T’s network and technology head provided the details of the service to WSJ at the Mobile Congress 2012 that kicked off today. He compared the service to the toll-free calling for mobile broadband.
Yesterday we had reported that Apple has already started testing 4G LTE-enabled iPhone with carriers.
Engadget has just reported that they’ve received a photo, which reveals that AT&T has recently installed LTE network equipment in one of the Apple Retail stores.
There’s a war on unlimited data being fought as we speak, and Ma Bell is leading the main charge. Just days after AT&T announced it would begin throttling data speeds for the heaviest bandwidth hogs grandfathered into the carrier’s no-limit internet service, it’s also confirmed it’s ready to crack the whip on illegal tethering as well. In attempt to achieve “fairness for all of [its] customers,” the carrier has added a bit of force behind its March announcement, sending out notices to anyone using their jailbroken iPhones as a mobile hotspot. The gist? Cut it out or be scaled back to a tiered data plan. In a statement originally given to 9to5mac, an AT&T spokesperson said:
AT&T has announced that it will throttle unlimited data plan customers starting in October.
Like other wireless companies, we’re taking steps to manage exploding demand for mobile data. Many experts agree the country is facing a serious wireless spectrum crunch. We’re responding on many levels, including investing billions in our wireless network this year and working to acquire additional network capacity. We’re also taking additional, more immediate measures to help address network congestion.
We’ve just been handed some internal AT&T information on device changes:
A new tier of device will be created in AT&T’s phone database on October 4th (a Tuesday:) which will require a higher rate of insurance. iPhone (and other devices) will move there on the arbitrary October 4th date. It is curious that the iPhone was mentioned specifically and not other devices.
AT&T announced last fall that it would begin its LTE rollout in mid-2011, and it’s now finally delivered a few more details. The carrier has just confirmed that five markets — Dallas, Houston, Chicago, Atlanta and San Antonio — will be getting LTE sometime “this summer,” with ten more as-yet-unnamed cities set to join them in the second half of the year. All told, AT&T says that should cover about 70 million Americans by year’s end. Of course, an LTE network needs some devices, but AT&T unfortunately isn’t providing much in the way of details about those just yet — it’s only saying that it plans to add 20 4G devices to its portfolio this year, and that “some of those” will be LTE capable.