AT&T Promises 15Mbps Wireless Broadband To Rural Customers After DirecTV Merger

AT&T Promises 15Mbps Wireless Broadband To Rural Customers After DirecTV Merger

AT&T has dangled a big carrot out there in its attempt to lead regulators to sign off on the company’s merger with DirecTV. If the deal happens, AT&T says it could bring 15Mbps wireless data service (bundled with satellite TV of course) to rural America in 2015. [More]

Your Guide To The Major Carriers’ iPhone 6 Offers

Your Guide To The Major Carriers’ iPhone 6 Offers

Apple announced a couple of new phones yesterday, triggering a Pavlovian response in some consumers that can only be eased by the acquisition of one of these new phones. It also pits the four national wireless carriers against each other in a battle for Apple-hungry customers. [More]

AT&T and Verizon: Your Home Network Doesn’t Actually Need To Be As Fast As Your Phone

AT&T and Verizon: Your Home Network Doesn’t Actually Need To Be As Fast As Your Phone

The FCC has been all about broadband this year. In the mix with net neutrality and the Comcast/TWC merger, they’re also taking on the dearth of broadband competition consumers face and even thinking about redefining the meaning of the term to a higher minimum network speed. But AT&T and Verizon aren’t having it: according to comments they’ve filed with the FCC, a wired network connection too slow for a solid Netflix connection, and slower than the 4G your phone uses, should be perfectly satisfactory for a bandwidth-hungry nation. [More]

Amazon Now Selling Fire Phone For $.99 With New Contract

Amazon Now Selling Fire Phone For $.99 With New Contract

It hasn’t even been two months since Amazon released its not-quite-3D Fire phone and it’s already slashed the price on the device like it’s a 3-year-old feature phone, announcing this morning that the Fire can be had for $.99 to customers willing to sign a two-year contract with AT&T. [More]

GameStop Gets Even Closer To AT&T, Offers Cricket Wireless Service In All Stores

GameStop Gets Even Closer To AT&T, Offers Cricket Wireless Service In All Stores

Over the past year, GameStop has revamped itself to stay relevant: offering trade-ins for unwanted gift cards, uploading customers fingerprints to the national database and acting as a sort-of bank for some customers. Now, the retailer is further entering all facets of consumer life by selling Cricket Wireless prepaid services at all locations. [More]

Why Isn’t America Freaking Out About AT&T/DirecTV Merger — And Should We Be?

Why Isn’t America Freaking Out About AT&T/DirecTV Merger — And Should We Be?

While pretty much everyone is scrutinizing the pending mega-merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable, not much attention is being paid to the possible marriage of the country’s second-largest wireless and pay-TV companies. And that leaves us with two big questions: What, if anything, makes these two mergers so different? And should we be more worried about a unified AT&T and DirecTV than we are? [More]

AT&T: Municipal Broadband Should Be Banned Anywhere Private Companies Might Want To Do Business Later

AT&T: Municipal Broadband Should Be Banned Anywhere Private Companies Might Want To Do Business Later

It’s no secret that AT&T and other big ISPs are no fans of municipal broadband projects. There are laws on the books in many states that block the expansion of municipal networks, but the FCC is considering using its authority to override those laws and let communities build networks if they wish. AT&T is also no fan of this proposal. In fact, says AT&T, not only should public networks be barred anywhere there is already a private option, but also they should be barred in any place there might possibly be a plan to build a private option in the future. [More]

How ISPs “Compete” With Municipal Networks: Lobbying and Campaign Donations That Block Them

How ISPs “Compete” With Municipal Networks: Lobbying and Campaign Donations That Block Them

Say you’re mayor of a small city. Your city is small enough and far enough away from other cities that the big cable companies don’t want to spend what it would cost to run wires through your town, because the amount they will make in return isn’t worth it. That’s reasonable, from a business perspective. So you and the residents of your city get together and come up with a plan to make a public broadband utility instead. Makes sense, right? You’d happily pay someone else to do it for you, but since they don’t want to take your money you’ll do it yourself. Only — surprise! In come those self-same cable companies to block you from doing that, too, and they get your state’s legislature and governor to pass a law against you for good measure, so you can never try again. [More]

Sprint Offers $60 Unlimited Data Plan That Won’t Interest Real Data Hogs

(Will Middelar)

Earlier this week, Sprint’s new CEO Marcelo Claure tried to take a swing at its bigger and/or faster competition by announcing a shared data plan that gives you a ton of data… on a network that’s currently so slow you’ll never get to use it all. Now Claure and company are trying again, offering an unlimited data plan that’s cheaper than the competition but probably won’t win over savvy data devourers. [More]

AT&T To Offer Gigabit Broadband Service In Apple’s Home Turf

AT&T To Offer Gigabit Broadband Service In Apple’s Home Turf

While Verizon’s FiOS expansion plans are apparently idling in the “to do… maybe, at some point” bin, AT&T appears to be moving forward with its plans to roll out its GigaPower gigabit broadband network to more markets. Today, the Death Star announced that it has selected its first target in California’s Silicon Valley — the city of Cupertino, better known as the home to Apple HQ. [More]

Comcast Says Mobile Data Is Competitive, But It Costs $2k To Stream Breaking Bad Over LTE

Comcast Says Mobile Data Is Competitive, But It Costs $2k To Stream Breaking Bad Over LTE

Comcast keeps on claiming that mobile broadband is real competition for wired home broadband. But for most users, it’s just plain not. Not only is the speed and reliability of mobile broadband still hugely variable depending on location and time of day, but also mobile data is still clearly not competitive on price. And how much more expensive is it to keep your phone on 4G instead of grabbing the nearest wi-fi signal? Our math says that trying to use your mobile data the same way you use your home wi-fi will cost you about twenty times more per month than your wired broadband bill. You’d have to be Walter White to be able to afford to watch all of Breaking Bad over your wireless network. [More]

(Misfit Photographer)

Sprint Is Prepping To Start A Price War, But Will Competitors Take The Bet?

Earlier this week, Sprint abandoned months of planning for a takeover of T-Mobile and fired CEO Dan Hesse after seven years of failing to make the company competitive with Verizon or AT&T. Now Sprint’s Chairman says the new CEO is prepping to start a price war to win over customers, but is Sprint really in a position to pick that fight? [More]

T-Mobile, Where Second Place = “Undisputed” Champ

T-Mobile, Where Second Place = “Undisputed” Champ

Yesterday, T-Mobile sent out a press release claiming that it is now the industry leader in prepaid wireless (we’ll get to that later). The statement from the magenta mobile provider also included the boast that T-Mobile “has maintained the undisputed title of America’s fastest nationwide 4G LTE network” and links to a recent test as evidence. Problem is, the results of that test don’t seem to back up T-Mobile’s horn-tooting. [More]

This is where I could gloat about last night's thumping of the Astros at the hands of the Phillies, but neither team has much to brag about this season.

AT&T, DirecTV To Take Over Comcast SportsNet Houston; Will Fans Finally Be Able To See Games?

Things are looking up for Houston Astros fans. The team isn’t currently in last place, and the ‘stros are outperforming the even more woeful Texas Rangers. Now comes news that some Houston-area sports fans may even get to watch their favorite teams on TV after a bankruptcy court determined to hand over ownership of Comcast SportsNet Houston to AT&T and DirecTV. [More]

All Four National Wireless Companies Accused Of Breaking FCC Rules By Hiding Information About Data Throttling

All Four National Wireless Companies Accused Of Breaking FCC Rules By Hiding Information About Data Throttling

Just over two weeks ago, the FCC not-so-gently reminded all four big wireless carriers that although true “net neutrality” might not apply to them, there are still rules about transparency and disclosures that they have to follow. At the time, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler said that companies had no excuse to think the FCC wasn’t watching them — and the FCC isn’t the only group putting wireless companies on notice over their lack of transparency. [More]

Wireless Carriers Are Victims Of Phone Cramming Too, They Just Make Billions Of Dollars Instead Of Losing It

Wireless Carriers Are Victims Of Phone Cramming Too, They Just Make Billions Of Dollars Instead Of Losing It

Opening your monthly mobile phone bill to find it significantly more expensive than it’s supposed to be can be infuriating. Finding out that it’s more expensive because you were charged for products you never requested is even worse. But wireless cramming is a practice that more and more consumers – and wireless providers (huh?) – are finding themselves victims of. [More]

T-Mobile Unveils $100, 10GB Family Plan. Is It Any Good?

T-Mobile Unveils $100, 10GB Family Plan. Is It Any Good?

Family plans are all the rage with wireless companies. Get groups of customers to buy a bucket of data together for a discounted price. This morning, T-Mobile announced a new plan that it hopes will lure customers in from AT&T, but the company isn’t making a big deal out a major restriction that could make the offer unattractive to some families. [More]

Kate Cox

From AT&T To Verizon: What The Web’s Biggest Players Told The FCC About Net Neutrality

The FCC originally planned to stop taking comments about their net neutrality proposal on Tuesday. But after demand overwhelmed and crashed their antique IT system, they extended the deadline to 11:59 p.m. (EDT) tonight. As of yesterday, well over one million comments had been entered, and that number’s still going up. Clearly, the public cares — but what is the public saying? [More]