Tag Archives: t-mobile

Will AT&T Pay a Break Up Fee to T-Mobile?

According to a news item making the rounds this morning, AT&T may well be on the hook to the tune of 6 billion bucks if the proposed merger with T-Mobile isn’t approved by the FCC. If the feds refuse to allow the $39 billion deal to go through, AT&T will pay out $3 billion in cash, $2 billion in specturm and yet another billion in the form of a roaming agreement. All of this dough will apparently be offered up as a “break up fee,” which likely enticed T-Mobile to agree to this deal in the first place. It’s a win-win situation for the company, after all. Even if they lose, they are still coming out ahead in a very big way.

This high amount proves that AT&T is pretty confident that they can convince regulators to approve the proposed deal. Companies such as Sprint, of course, are vehemently opposed to the sale. The cash portion of this deal alone is worth nearly 8% of the total deal price, and the addition of the assets and services mean that these two companies are smashing previous records when it comes to break up fees.

Your mouth is likely hanging wide open after reading these numbers. Think of it from T-Mobile’s point of view, though. The deal is not just about them making boatloads of money… their services would be drastically improved by joining with AT&T. If the sale doesn’t go through, the company stands to still languish as a lesser provider. The spectrum fee alone will pay for about 10 megahertz of spectrum. This is the absolute minimum required to offer high-speed wireless service to consumers.

That 10 megahertz would more than DOUBLE T-Mobile’s current available specturm for your high-speed services, y’all. The company would then be able to increase data speeds by about 1 1/2 times over what you are used to now. 20 megahertz would increase speeds by nearly four times. In a time when data speeds are important to all of us when choosing a provider, losing out on the chance to merge with AT&T will still allow T-Mobile to become much more competitive – without having to raise their prices in order to do so.

What are your thoughts on the entire proposal? Are you in favor of the deal, or against it? Do you believe that these extremely high break up fees are within the realm of normal these days?

AT&T Admits It Cannot Handle the Traffic

The truth? You can’t handle the truth! This quote from the movie “A Few Good Men” pretty much sums up the way I feel about the news flying around the web today regarding AT&T. I’m angry – much as many of you are. Guess what, oh darling AT&T? We already knew you couldn’t handle our iPhone traffic. We’ve known this for nearly four years now. We’ve attempted to tell you. We’ve begged and pleaded. We have whined, nagged and thrown virtual temper tantrums. FINALLY you admit there’s an actual problem. Doing this a long time ago would have gone a long way towards keeping customers happy and loyal to your company.

In today’s FCC filing, the mobile giant admits that it needs help in order to succeed. It clearly lays out the reasoning for wanting to buy out T-Mobile: it needs the additional boost to the network. The company’s mobile data volume jumped by more than 8,000% in the time period from 2007 to 2010. As a result, its network is dealing with capacity constraints far more severe than any other provider. Sure, Verizon has the iPhone now, as well… along with other smartphones. But the sheer volume of this Apple device on AT&Ts network has brought the carrier to its knees.

AT&T claims in the filing that the buyout “will thus benefit consumers by reducing the number of dropped and blocked calls, increasing data speeds, improving in-building coverage, and dramatically expanding deployment of next-generation mobile technology.” With devices such as the iPhone generating more than twenty times the amount of data a conventional smartphone does, the network is clogged on a constant basis. Calls are dropped and lost. Downloads are stalled. Connections aren’t available. It’s a nightmare, and one which AT&T hopes will end with this merger.

The company has said repeatedly that there isn’t time to beef up its network on its own. It takes years to get proper permits and things lined up in order to build even one tower. Imagine the time – and money – it would take to erect enough towers to make the network truly stable again. This merger makes sense for that reason alone – but not everyone agrees.

Sprint is vehemently opposed, for obvious reasons. The merger will undoubtedly make the company an enormous one. Sprint wants the government to put the kibosh on the entire deal, claiming that it will create a “duopoly” which will prevent other companies from being competitive. Sprint also feels that the deal will raise prices through the roof.

As an AT&T customer, I sure won’t mind having a more stable and reliable network. I don’t want to sneer when the Verizon guy asks if I can hear him now. I’d like to simply use my phone anytime – and anywhere – I wish. I can see the point of view of the competing businesses and those opposed. I don’t know… what do you think? Is this a deal that should be allowed? Keep in mind that the data demands on AT&T – and all other companies – will continue to skyrocket over the next few years. Should they be merging together in this manner, or should they be attempting to build more towers?

What Would You Say About the AT&T and T-Mobile Deal?

If you were given a voice about the proposed T-Mobile buyout, what would you say? Do you feel that your voice matters in this situation? Even though the $39 Billion purchase has yet to go in front of the government for review, Consumers Union wants to know what you think. You can send an email to The Consumerist to share your thoughts.

The combined company (if it gets the proper approvals) will be the largest US carrier by far. AT&T and T-Mobile together have about 25% more subscribers now than Verizon does. The acquisition is reportedly not about gaining new subscribers, though – it’s about improving the reliability of service overall. Additionally, the move helps AT&T prepare for the advent of 4G communication.

AT&T has been lambasted for poor service and dropped calls more times than it is likely possible to count. However, fixing the issues isn’t as easy as some would like to believe. The company is investing billions to upgrade the network. This isn’t a fast process, though, friends. It takes YEARS to get approval and then build new towers, especially in areas such as San Francisco and New York City. These are reportedly two of the worst service areas due to congestion. Yet – the company’s hands are tied when it comes to hurrying a fix along. This proposed cellular service merger will open up many new towers, thus improving service instantly for millions of people.

The Consumerist site has posted articles both in favor of and against this marriage of companies. Now, the site wants to hear your take on the venture:

Before the sale goes under the regulators’ microscope, CU wants to hear opinions on how the everyday consumer — regardless of their current wireless provider — thinks the deal will impact everything from rates to choice to customer service.

If the choice were up to you, what would you decide? Would you allow the buyout or would you throw the proverbial hand in AT&Ts face?

T-Mobile myTouch 4G Unboxing


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The T-Mobile myTouch 4G is one of three phones with 4G capability available from T-Mobile. In this video, Lockergnome’s Jake Ludington does an unboxing of the myTouch 4G, walking through the contents of the box and some of the core features of this Android phone. One unique feature of the myTouch 4G packaging is the ability to use the included zipper case as a protective case for other things you might want to carry in a purse or backpack.

Jake would like T-Mobile to stop showing that video as soon as you begin to use your phone for the first time. Seriously. No one needs to see that.

Take note that once you select your theme, you then have the options to set up your social networks. This is definitely the way to do things: don’t make us have to find apps to connect where we want to be. Don’t put it off any longer than you have to. Get us hooked up and sending out information immediately. We cannot be away from Twitter and Facebook more than a few moments, you know! (And we know YOU can’t, either!)

Setup and configuration is fairly simple, and won’t require you to read the included user guides.

What are Your First Impressions of the T-Mobile myTouch 4G?


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Jake Ludington shares his first impressions of the T-Mobile myTouch 4G. The myTouch features HSPA+ 4G broadband service, both front and rear facing cameras, 720p video, Qik for lifecasting, and a number of other enhancements over 3G phones. In comparing speeds via Speedtest.net T-Mobile was at least twice as fast as Sprint 4G in side-by-side tests during this 48 hour period. myTouch also includes some features to track actions of your friends, as well lock the dialing and SMS features if small children are using your phone.

Jake is switching up to the myTouch from the Nexus 1. He says that this phone is much faster. Please don’t give him any flak about his choice of carrier. That is a no-brainer for Jake and his family. He does not receive any service at his home with AT&T, Sprint or Verizon… but he does with T-Mobile. You use what works best for you, remember?

He loves being able to shoot 720p video with his phone. He says it’s not “better” than the iPhone 4 video quality, but is definitely on par with it. The front-facing camera on the myTouch is not very good, with poor resolution and quality. The rear camera is far better, and gives him everything he could ask for.

This device came with Froyo out of the box. Jake would have preferred Gingerbread, of course. To that end, it seemed to him as though all of his software was instantly out of date. Several apps which ship with the phone needed an update in order to even work.

Another thing that bothers our friend is an experience that leaves much to be desired when it comes to music and apps purchased. With the iPhone, you can buy a new model and sync to your iTunes account. Everything you’ve purchased or downloaded in the past (so long as you backed up and sync’d at some point in time!) will automagically download to your new phone. This is not true with the Android devices. You have to figure out which apps are missing and re-download them again. That’s very frustrating and time-consuming.

One feature that Jake is very happy with is the Kids Mode. He has a young daughter who likes to watch videos on his phone. He doesn’t want her to accidentally send a text message or dial a phone number. Kids Mode will prevent this problem. Set it up to allow the kids to interact with the phone features that YOU choose.

T-Mobile has done a few things to go beyond the Android experience. Some of those things are great – and some not so great. However, those little items will boil down to a matter of preference, depending on the user.

Overall, Jake is pretty happy with his upgrade. Have you used a myTouch 4G yet? What are your thoughts?

T-Mobile Wants to Slow You Down with Caps and Throttling

Beginning October 16th, those of you with T-Mobile who use more than 5GB of data per month are going to be quite angry. As of that date, the company will begin reducing data speeds after you reach 5GB of usage in a single billing cycle. The previous cap was 10GB per month. The company claims the change will only affect about 1% of their subscriber base. I have a feeling that number is a slight exaggeration.

After you reach that cap, you’ll receive a free text from the company telling you that your speeds will be reduced. Once the new bill cycle begins, your speeds will return to normal. If you want to keep track of your data usage, you can easily do so by logging into your account.

The good news is that you still will not be charged for overages. Sure, you’ll crawl along the information highway and never find what you need… but at least you won’t pay extra for doing so!

T-Mobile Adds Kids are Free Plan to Help Your Budget

If you’re a parent, you know how difficult it is to maintain proper communications within your family these days. Kids are involved in more activities than ever. Parents are busier than ever. We cannot freeze time, and we cannot seem to get in touch every time we need to. Mobile plans aren’t cheap, and many families cannot afford to add lines to their plans so that their children can carry a phone with them. Those of you who don’t have children may scoff at the though of a child or teen needing a phone. Trust me, though – all of my friends who are parents will vehemently tell you that this is imperative.

T-Mobile understands that being able to add your kids to your phone plan often doesn’t work with your budget. They introduced the new Kids are Free program yesterday. With Kids Are Free, new and existing T-Mobile customers who sign up for a qualifying family plan through Nov. 2, 2010, receive free add-a-line service on up to three lines of their plan until 2012. “Not only is T-Mobile offering the most flexible and affordable family plans among national carriers today, we are also making it more affordable than ever for families to add their kids or other family members by eliminating the associated monthly service fee until 2012,” said Ashley White, marketing director of value offers at T-Mobile USA. “The up-front cost of purchasing new phones and dealing with monthly service fees for an entire family can add up quickly, so this promotion is designed to make it easier for families.”

The mobile carrier is offering a few other new plans this fall, as well:

  • Special deals on the latest devices. Starting today customers who purchase a Samsung Vibrant receive a second Samsung Vibrant for free after a $50 mail-in rebate with a two-year service agreement. Also, T-Mobile’s new line of messaging phones are all under $75 after a mail-in rebate with a two-year service agreement. Adding unlimited texting for the whole family is just $20 per month.
  • Different types of contracts:T-Mobile’s Even More® and no annual contract Even More Plus® family plans offer customers affordable options for their family’s wireless communication. T-Mobile’s Even More family plans start at $59.99 per month and T-Mobile’s Even More Plus family plans start at just $49.99 per month.
  • T-Mobile’s Family Allowances service lets parents set up-front monthly allowances for their family’s phone usage — minutes, messages, and downloads.

Does your child or teen have a cell phone? Does it put a painful dent in your monthly budget to keep them connected to you in this way?

I'm Not in Love – an Android vs iPhone Song

Imei has decided it’s time to make a change and begin using the iPhone 4 in her daily life. Following is the post she wrote to explain her choice.

You’ve probably heard me as “the voice of reason” when it comes to Android vs. iPhone. I believe Android gives iPhone a run for its money by producing creativity in open source apps, and competition to the run-away favorite. But my year as the n00b of Social Media is coming to an end, and I need a seamless user experience I can take to the bank as my businesses take off. Chris Pirillo told me last year to wait for the next iPhone. Well, I’ve waited. And it’s time (I’m expecting a free bumper, though).

Using Looptastic HD on the iPad, a Bose speaker, my Yamaha 0RS-700 keyboard for percussion, a microphone and a portable speaker, I can get some live sound in my library/office! If you want to learn more about Looptastic, take a look at my other video about using Looptastic HD to become your own iPad DJ. The mix you hear on this video took only two minutes for me to find and create. By setting the bpm’s, I can sync that to any other looping program — it just so happens to be my keyboard. Once I add a six-channel mixer to the apps, you can add harmonies and other melody lines, or layer in another song.

I want to thank T-mobile for six years of great service. I really like T-mobile as a company. I just wasn’t satisfied with the battery life, the forced closing of the My Touch nearly every hour (with very few apps), and the slow response. The camera quality is also poor quality even compared to the iPhone 3GS. But I am looking forward to the next Android phones to keep all phone companies and dev’s staying sharp and creating the best products ever!

All of the music and lyrics in this video were created by Imei herself.

Have you made any type of major change in provider service? What prompted the decision?

New Motorola Droid X and Samsung Vibrant Full of Bloatware

Recently, we discussed bloatware found on computers. Bloatware includes all of the unnecessarily pre-installed programs that come with your shiny new machine. They take up space and sit there trying to entice you into using them. Over the years, we’ve hardened ourselves to this problem and simply start removing stuff as soon as we hook up our new toy. We shouldn’t have to do this, no. It’s just an annoying fact of life. Sadly, it seems as though many smartphones are now following in their big brother’s footsteps.

The Motorola Droid X and the Samsung Vibrant (both just released today) come with some bloatware apps pre-installed. The problem is, though, that most of them are NOT able to be removed. The Droid X, for instance, sports a Blockbuster video app and a demo for an Electronic Arts game called Need for Speed: Shift. The Blockbuster app includes a store locator and a place where you can download mobile movies from their catalog. You cannot uninstall this app from your phone – you can only remove it from your home screen. The game gives you limited functionality and a nice, big button urging you to buy the full version. This app can be removed, thankfully. Skype is included on the phone and is another permanent fixture. A strange new “feature” called City ID is also included. It gives location information about a phone number on your incoming call screen. It will only work for fifteen days, and then you’ll have to pony up about two bucks per month to use it.

The Vibrant is no less guilty of feeding us bloated apps we don’t need. You’ll find the Avatar movie on your phone, just in case you want to watch it over and over. One cannot help but wonder how much they paid to have that handily included. Another app is a video channel named MobiTV, which is only free for the first month. Third, you’ll find The Sims 3: Collector’s Edition. And last – but likely least – is an OLD version of Amazon’s Kindle app. None of these four applications can be removed from the device.

To me, this is ludicrous. I should have the ability to choose what programs and applications I want on my devices. If you want to pre-load something, so be it. I’m used to that. But you damn well need to give me the ability to get rid of whatever it is I don’t want. Do you agree with me – or not?

T-Mobile webConnect Will Throttle You

The webConnect USB Laptop Stick provides fast, easy wireless Internet access for your laptop by automatically finding the best T-Mobile network connection (3G, HotSpot/Wi-Fi, or EDGE). The service will now no longer charge you an arm and a leg to connect to the Internet. Instead of charging you an overage fee when you pass the 5GB per month cap, you’ll instead have your service throttled. Exact details about how that information will be throttled has not yet been fully disclosed. In the meantime, the 200MB webConnect plan will drop overage fees from $.20/MB to $.10/MB.

The 5GB plan starts at $40, while a 200MB contract is listed at $25 per month. I’m not sure that this is enough of a “plan” to convince me to run off to sign a two year contract. What about you?

There is no overage fees or caps on the amount of software you can get from us! Check back daily to see what’s new.