FCC Chair Confirms Title II Approach To Net Neutrality; AT&T Already Warming Up For Lawsuit

FCC Chair Confirms Title II Approach To Net Neutrality; AT&T Already Warming Up For Lawsuit

In an op-ed today, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler confirmed what sources in the know have recently been saying: to preserve net neutrality, the FCC is indeed going to seek to regulate ISPs as Title II common carriers. [More]

(Mike Mozart)

FCC Proposes $640,000 Fine For AT&T’s Violation Of Airwave License Rules

If you don’t play by the Federal Communications Commission’s rules, then you’re likely going to get caught and have to pay a hefty fine. Just ask AT&T, which must pay $640,000 after violating rules and requirements for operating some airwave licenses. [More]

Dear Verizon Customers: Don’t Hold Your Breath Waiting For Rollover Data Plans

(Mike Mozart)

While T-Mobile and AT&T have each recently started allowing smartphone users to carry over unused data from one month to the next, customers of the nation’s largest wireless provider shouldn’t hold their breath waiting for Verizon to announce something similar. [More]

T-Mobile’s Parent Company Still Wants To See It Married Off To Someone Else

T-Mobile’s Parent Company Still Wants To See It Married Off To Someone Else

It’s been a little more than three years since AT&T dumped T-Mobile at the altar when it became clear that the FCC and Justice Dept. wouldn’t sign off on the marriage. And while the little magenta wireless company has done okay for itself since — building out a decent LTE network, shaking up the subsidized device/contract model, and helping to preserve what little competition remains in the market — its parent company still wants to see T-Mobile USA married off to a wealthy American suitor. [More]

(Paul Fidalgo)

3 Of The Many Times The Big ISPs Have Tried To Have It Both Ways

With the prospect of new regulations staring them in the face, big ISPs have been taking every possible opportunity to wail about how doomed they will be if anything changes. But every cable and telecom company that has spent 2014 and 2015 vowing that regulation is the worst thing ever has also spent years benefiting from exactly those regulations. Here are just a few examples. [More]

AT&T Says It Can’t Be Sued By FTC Over Throttling Of Unlimited Data Plans

AT&T Says It Can’t Be Sued By FTC Over Throttling Of Unlimited Data Plans

Last October, the Federal Trade Commission sued AT&T, alleging that the wireless company failed to adequately disclose to its “unlimited” data customers that it could throttle their network speeds and that this throttling could slow their data speeds by upwards of 90%. In a recent court filing, AT&T claims that the FTC doesn’t have the jurisdiction to bring this lawsuit in the first place. [More]

AT&T To Free Up More Data For Mobile Subscribers, At Cost Of Net Neutrality

AT&T To Free Up More Data For Mobile Subscribers, At Cost Of Net Neutrality

Most of us are used to mobile companies clinging tightly to every precious bit and byte of data like a dragon hoards gold. Unlimited data plans were everywhere for a while, then went away, and then kinda sorta came back but not really. This week, AT&T has announced two big changes that will work to free up “bonus” data for their subscribers. One is harmless and maybe even good, but the other could have big, negative repercussions for mobile internet use. [More]

T-Mobile, AT&T Customers Can Now Request Their $170M In Refunds From Cramming Settlements

T-Mobile, AT&T Customers Can Now Request Their $170M In Refunds From Cramming Settlements

Earlier this year, AT&T and T-Mobile both reached major settlements with federal regulators over the illegal practice of cramming: third-party charges snuck onto wireless customers’ bills without their authorization. Combined, the two settlements will put about $170 million back in consumers’ pockets. But in order to get money back, consumers first have to ask for it. [More]

(Spidra Webster)

CFPB Lawsuit: Sprint Made Millions Off Consumers Acting As A “Breeding Ground” For Bill-Cramming

Just a day after rumors surfaced that Sprint could be facing a $105 million from the Federal Communications Commission for allegedly overcharging customers using a practice known as “bill-cramming,” the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has filed a lawsuit against the carrier for the bogus charges placed on customer’s phone bills. [More]

(Misfit Photographer)

FCC Reportedly Planning To Fine Sprint $105M For Wireless Bill-Cramming

Just two months after the Federal Communications Commission imposed its largest fine on AT&T for overcharging consumers using a practice known as “bill-cramming,” the regulator is reportedly poised to saddle Sprint with the same $105 million fine for similar practices. [More]

AT&T Scores Big New Contract From Government Agency After Hiring Their CIO

AT&T Scores Big New Contract From Government Agency After Hiring Their CIO

AT&T nabbed two big scores from one federal agency this year: one, a top executive with years of government experience and two, a lucrative contract to be that agency’s mobile carrier. Both AT&T and the agency say the two are unrelated, and they very well may be. But the timing highlights once again that the revolving door between government and business is an opening not only for career opportunities, but also for big questions about how corporations can gain undue influence in Washington. [More]

Verizon: New Net Neutrality Rules Won’t Actually Hurt Our Network Investment At All (But We’ll Still Sue)

Verizon: New Net Neutrality Rules Won’t Actually Hurt Our Network Investment At All (But We’ll Still Sue)

All of the big ISPs have been full of bluster about the FCC’s pending new net neutrality rules, but none more so than Verizon. Verizon is the company that sued in the first place to get the 2010 rule overturned, and they are the company that has been most aggressive with promises to sue again when the FCC actually comes up with a rule. Their main argument has been that strong regulation will damage their ability to invest in their networks — but it seems even Verizon’s own top executives don’t fall for that nonsense. [More]

AT&T Not Worried That Competition Is Causing More Customers To Go Elsewhere

(jetsetpress)

This morning, AT&T’s Chief Financial Officer admitted that competition from smaller providers like Sprint and T-Mobile has resulted in a slight uptick in customer defections, but also said the company is not concerned because AT&T continues to pick up new users. [More]

BabyFirst/AT&T U-Verse iPad App Named Worst Toy Of 2014

BabyFirst/AT&T U-Verse iPad App Named Worst Toy Of 2014

A year after the combination potty/iPad stand took home an award for Worst Toy of the Year, an app from BabyFirst and AT&T U-Verse that your youngsters could use while pottying on last year’s winner has been crowned the worst for 2014. [More]

Sprint Exec Admits That “Half-Off” Offer Will Likely Only Result In Savings Of Around 20%

Sprint Exec Admits That “Half-Off” Offer Will Likely Only Result In Savings Of Around 20%

Earlier this week, Sprint introduced a new offer for current Verizon and AT&T customers looking to switch service — same amount of data at half the price. We noted at the time that the major catch to this deal is that you have to pay full price for your new phone when you switch (or pay $200), but how much would that cut into your savings? According to one top Sprint exec, quite a lot. [More]

FCC Releases Massive Study On Mobile Phone Theft, Asks Wireless Companies To Start Making Changes

FCC Releases Massive Study On Mobile Phone Theft, Asks Wireless Companies To Start Making Changes

Smartphones are amazingly convenient: tiny little hand-sized computers that make it easy to organize our lives on the go. They’re also amazingly good targets for theft: tiny, portable, expensive, and full of personal information. Mobile device theft is on the rise, just as mobile devices are, and the FCC has been trying to find ways to protect consumers when their devices get yanked from their hands. [More]

(Mike Mozart)

How Dropping Phone, TV Service From AT&T Bundle Resulted In 3-Year Collection Hell For Customer

Cable and telecom companies love to sell you on the convenience and affordability of bundles combining phone, TV and Internet service onto one bill. But what they don’t tell you is that shedding that bundle could end up in a billing nightmare. [More]

AT&T “Intervenes” In City’s Public Broadband Project, But Says They Won’t Interfere

AT&T “Intervenes” In City’s Public Broadband Project, But Says They Won’t Interfere

A small city in Kansas has a fiber network that currently serves local government and civic buildings. They also have a plan in mind to expand that network and offer inexpensive gigabit fiber connections to every resident and business. That’s great news for the locals, but not such great news for the incumbent ISP, AT&T, which has won the right to “intervene” in the process. [More]