MacNN is reporting –
“AT&T on Saturday issued a brief initial response to a Federal Communications Commission letters of inquiry sent to Apple, AT&T and Google on Friday regarding their roles in the rejection of Google Voice-enabled apps. Addressing concerns that it may have denied the apps to exclude a service that provides lower-cost long distance and SMS without using its data network, AT&T spokesman Brad Mays flatly denied any link between AT&T and decisions made by Apple as to which apps are allowed on the App Store, instead putting the responsibility on the iPhone maker. A larger response is said to be forthcoming.”
(Read full article at MacNN | The Macintosh News Network.)
The Apple blog has a GREAT article explaining why AT&T is charging us “Loyal customers” so much for the iPhone upgrade!
“There is already a lot of noise over this all around the ‘net. Owners of the iPhone 3G saying they’re getting ripped off, or not being treated like ‘loyal customers,’ because they’re not being offered the fully subsidized price for the new iPhone 3G S. In reality the AT&T upgrade pricing is pretty much like all phone subsidies in the U.S. (and, for that matter, many other parts of the world). Actually, it’s a little better.”
(Read full article – On Subsidization: AT&T is Not Ripping Off iPhone 3G Owners)
FINALLY it comes true….well. I’ll believe it when I see it!
According to AT&T;
“Access the Internet anytime
AT&T knows Wi-Fi is hot, and FREE Wi-Fi is even hotter. Which is why FREE AT&T Wi-Fi access is now available for Apple iPhone at thousands of hotspots nationwide, including Starbucks*. Users can relax and access music, email and web browsing services with their favorite blend in hand from the comfort of their nearest location. For information visit www.att.com/attwifi.
Find a Starbucks location near you.
*Wi-Fi available at U.S. company-operated Starbucks locations equipped with a hotspot.
Thousands of AT&T Wi-Fi hotspot locations nationwide
Whether you browse from your laptop, phone, or device AT&T is committed to enhancing your experience by providing powerful broadband speeds. This allows for fast and easy downloads of your favorite music, streaming videos, games, and more.”
(Via att )
According to macsimumnews -
“AT&T has developed a software trick that will allow iPhones to recognize voice commands without the need for specialized voice recognition software.”
There is a video describing how it works – I can’t wait until this comes out, very handy and very cool.
AT&T activation server crashes and an issue with iTunes.
Looks like the launch of Apple’s new iPhone 3G has not been without problems, though there’s been no reason yet to break out that iPod white riot gear. But in-store activation, and activation in general, are proving difficult at times thanks to AT&T activation server crashes and an issue with iTunes. “There’s a worldwide issue with iTunes that Apple (AAPL) is working to resolve,” said AT&T (T) spokeswoman Sarah Andreani. “We’re signing people up for service in the AT&T stores–their plan, their phone number, etc. The final step is to tether to iTunes. We were doing that for customers in our stores, but while Apple is working to resolve the iTunes issue, we’re having customers do the iTunes synch later at home.”
Apparently, that’s not working out so well, either.
Apple is dutifully working on the issue and suggests waiting until a bit later today to activate.
Due to network congestion on the iTunes server, you may not be able to update or restore the software on your iPhone. Once the congestion has decreased the software should be available for you to update. It would be advisable to attempt the update later on today.
If you have attempted to restore your iPhone and it is currently in recovery mode, you will not be able to use your iPhone until the software has been restored or updated. A temporary solution may be to use your SIM in another AT&T phone or have your calls forwarded to a phone you have access to.
We apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused.
If you would like to voice your concerns to Apple about this, feel free to visit apple.com/feedback
Thank-you for your patience on this matter.
Your Apple Care Team
(Via All Things Digital)
Piper Jaffray says iPhone 3G’s real cost to users: $407
With a public increasingly puzzled about the actual cost of an iPhone 3G, researchers now see Apple losing some of its early sales to buyers waiting for a less costly upgrade.
The financial firm’s senior analyst Gene Munster explains that the multi-tiered iPhone 3G prices, which vary depending on the customer’s existing status with AT&T, masks the real cost of entry for many users.
The typical price for an 8GB iPhone is more likely to be a considerably higher $407 based on what most will actually pay, according to the report. That cost is just above the $399 price for non-upgradable AT&T customers and is more than double the $199 price touted by Apple and AT&T in their marketing campaigns — a sticker price which is strictly a “best case scenario” not likely to be seen by many, Munster says.
The often-criticized monthly plan is also said to be a shield for the true cost of owning a phone and may well scare off some customers. Equaling the original iPhone’s plans, including the 200 text messages, costs $75 per month, or $15 more per month than what subscribers have to pay for the earlier handset. Even with ideal pricing, an owner of an iPhone 3G ultimately pays $360 more than they would have before over the life of the phone’s two-year contract.
A combination of the two pricing woes is predicted to leave many customers left in an unenviable position at launch. The impact of this is could be serious enough to force many customers to wait up to roughly 18 months before making the purchase, no matter how interested they are in Apple’s second-generation hardware.
“Buyers will wait until their contract on their current carrier expires, or AT&T subscribers become upgrade eligible,” the analyst claims. “As a result, we believe initial iPhone 3G sales will be diluted, but that sales will increase over the next 18 months as the average cost decreases.”
Researchers at Piper Jaffray are nonetheless convinced Apple will have little difficulty blossoming its marketshare in the US within as little as a year. Munster cites both a survey of 200 cellphone owners and the potential $1 billion market of the just-launched App Store as factors in growing Apple’s command of the US phone market from an estimated 3.4 percent today to approximately 8 percent in mid-2009.
As many as 45 million iPhones are still predicted to ship within all of 2009
AT&T announces iPhone 3G pricing plans
Finally, a piece of news we can actually do something with. AT&T today announced its pricing structure for the next iteration of Apple’s iPhone. There’s not much that’s surprising here — new customers and those eligible for an upgrade will be able to nab the phone for $199 (8GB) or $299 (16GB), while “early upgraders” will have to fork over $399 or $499, all with a two year contract and $18 upgrade fee, of course. The telco says a no-commitment version of the phone will be available for $599 and $699, though it looks like that will come after the initial launch. AT&T appears to be leaning pretty heavily towards the all-in unlimited plans, but there are options if you don’t want to go that route.
MacNN | AT&T (not) limiting iPhone 3G speeds to 1.4Mbps
Readers of AT&T’s Apple iPhone 3G website, have this weekend been left confounded by information that iPhone 3G data download speeds will apparently be limited to 1.4Mbps, while other devices tout much faster speeds. With the figure also echoed in the official AT&T press release, speculation is that the 1.4Mbps limit is not a website error.
With the latest HSDPA cards now offering speeds up to 7.2Mbps, and even iPhone 3G rivals such as Motorola’s Moto Q listed capable of 3.6Mbps speeds, it would seem that the iPhone 3G, despite being significantly faster than the first iPhone model, may not, at first glance, live up to its early “3G” promise; it is unclear why the yet-to-be-released device would be slower than “3G” device counterparts from other companies.
With clarification expected from AT&T in the next few days, this download speed ‘mystery’ can only serve to confuse potential buyers in an already crowded and complex 3G market, while 3G device rivals are offering faster download speeds.”
(Get the WHOLE story Here!!)
Starbucks to offer two hours of free AT&T Wi-Fi a day
If you don’t drink coffee and you’re looking for an excuse to visit Starbucks, here it is. Starbucks will begin offering two hours of free AT&T Wi-Fi a day, all to redeem the loyalty of their lost customers (as well as welcome some new ones in).
The only thing that customers need to do in order to avail of the free service is purchase a minimum $5 reloadable Starbucks Card, which they will use to register online for the Starbucks Rewards Card program. This card should be used at least once a month to be eligible for the two consecutive hours of free AT&T Wi-Fi.
A voucher for a free drink will be offered to new members of the reward program as additional incentive, if the free Internet access is not enough.
Originally, Starbucks worked with T-Mobile for Wi-Fi but the service is being phased out in 2008. Again, you don’t need to be a coffee buff to use this service, you just need to purchase and register online for the Starbucks Rewards Card program and you’ll be good to go.
Now it would have been better if maybe a whole town or city block could just provide free Wi-Fi access, but hey, at least they’re offering something. And that’s a start. They could make it even better by installing public access PCs so that people who don’t have their own portable computers can also have a chance to hit the Intewebs, I think.
Read USA Today
AT&T: Your plastic bag. Delivered.
A great story from TUAW:
I purchased an iPhone during the refurb sale that AT&T had last week. In two working days I got my 16 gig iPhone, times two. Two identical boxes, two identical iPhones and two identical charges on my debit card. Given the good deal, I decided to keep both (yes, despite the impending update). Imagine my surprise when my wife called me at work the next day to report that a third box had arrived from AT&T via DHL 2-day shipping, and that it was twice the size of either of the iPhone boxes. Given the previous day’s spoils, I couldn’t wait to get home.
Arriving at my house, I located the box and sat down with it on the couch. It was very, very light, but I’ve become accustomed to good things not weighing much. Pulling out my trusty Swiss Tech Utili-Key, I carefully sliced open my unexpected delivery. Inside was a packing slip with a single line item:
75011 MISC iPhone PPA BAG … $0.00
Yes, it was an unsolicited, rush delivery, plastic iPhone bag. This is definitely not a first for AT&T and the monetary waste involved in packing and shipping a completely unnecessary plastic bag is, I assume, passed back to the consumer. Next time you look at your AT&T bill, you can think about my MISC iPhone PPA BAG … which I’ll be cherishing forever. Or at least until the novelty wears off.
(Via The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW).)