My dislike of AT&T has been no secret on my blog. Others have shared similar disgust both in my blog’s comments section and in personal email.
To recap just a single reason AT&T has earned my ire: Because AT&T will not offer me the tethered wireless internet connection* my iPhone supports, I have a Verizon wireless card that allows me to surf the internet on my laptop. (AT&T didn’t even offer this service for Mac users when I purchased the Verizon card!!!!!) I have yet to be in a location where my Verizon card does not get a robust signal. It always works flawlessly!
However, I can’t begin to recall all of the places where my iPhone’s AT&T signal did not exist at all or was so unspeakably sporadic (full signal one second and no signal the next, resulting in a dropped call and no internet connection) as to make it useless, or it connected to AT&T’s slower, creeping, crawling Edge network.
From my vantage point as an end user, Verizon’s network is vastly superior and more expansive when compared to my experiences with the AT&T network. My only gripe with Verizon is that they have been rumored to have turned down Apple’s proposed iPhone deal when it was first offered to them. Foolish, foolish choice! They could have all but killed the monolithic AT&T!
Cingular then accepted Apple’s offer only to then get bought by the giant AT&T that had previous been dismantled as a violation of anti-trust law.
Whatever did happen to those laws?!!!!
This week, Verizon filed a sarcastic and defiant response to the lawsuit earlier this month alleging that Verizon’s “There’s a Map for That” ads falsely assert that AT&T has major gaps in its wireless coverage. In Verizon’s response filed with the U.S. District Court for Northern Georgia, the company eschewed standard legalese and instead launched into a bombastic broadside against its rival.
“AT&T did not file this lawsuit because Verizon’s ‘There’s A Map For That’ advertisements are untrue,” said the introduction. “AT&T sued because Verizon’s ads are true and the truth hurts.”
The response then went on to taunt AT&T for the small size of its 3G wireless coverage.
“Verizon Wireless has invested billions of dollars since 2004 upgrading nearly its entire network across the continental United States… and today covers five times more of the United States than AT&T’s 3G network,” it said. “Despite the far smaller size of its 3G network, AT&T has spent tens of millions of dollars making its 3G network… the centerpiece of its national advertising.”
Verizon’s “There’s a Map for That” ads typically show AT&T users struggling to use applications on their mobile devices while Verizon customers happily watch live streaming videos. The ads then display maps that show the total geographical reach of 3G coverage for each carrier, with Verizon’s map showing a far larger area of the country covered by its 3G service.
AT&T has not disputed that the maps used by Verizon in its ads are accurate. Rather, it has accused Verizon of misleading consumers by implying that AT&T has no wireless coverage in large parts of the country, when in reality parts not covered by AT&T’s 3G HSPA network are still covered by its 2G EDGE network. However, in Verizon’s ads the company clearly marks the maps as “AT&T 3G Coverage” and “Verizon Wireless 3G Coverage.”
Live streaming video???!!! Where’s that AT&T?!! Why are you not providing iPhone users with that service AT&T?!!
AT&T just needs to stop pocketing all of that cash from iPhone users’ absurdly high billing plans, and start investing it in provided a vastly improved network. But no! Of course not!
The day Verizon kicks off full support for the iPhone will be the day this customer drops AT&T in less than a heartbeat, even though AT&T will extort its $200 cancelation fee–a small price to pay for no longer supporting AT&T’s corporate interests over their customers’ interests. AT&T probably knows I will only be the first of millions of iPhone customers to do so and therefore, I’m guessing, chooses to pocket the cash while they can rather than invest it in an improved user network experience. I’m guessing they’ve done the math, and it appears to be all about profit for AT&T.
And the PR firm that came up with Verizon’s “There’s a Map for That” advertising campaign is completely brilliant! It’s so effective on so many levels it has AT&T crying foul. Hopefully it will also be a catalyst for forging a partnership between Apple and Verizon sooner rather than later. AT&T is indeed the weak link crippling the iPhone user experience!
*Tethered wireless internet connection: The iPhone has the ability to automatically connect to my laptop wirelessly when it is physically near (within 30 feet) the laptop and seamlessly, without the user having to do anything, allow my laptop to surf the internet through the iPhone’s connection to the cell phone carrier‘s network. Astoundingly, considering how much money iPhone users pay for their service plans, AT&T currently refuses to support this feature! I suspect they refuse support because their network is, as Verizon has clearly pointed out, inadequate for the task.