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The Lead

T-Mobile Passes Up Sprint in New RootMetrics Network Report

August 19, 2014 11:12 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

In measuring during the first half of the year, RootMetrics found earned an overall score of 71.5 out of 100 and Sprint scored 69.6 out of 100 in the same category. In RootMetrics’ previous report, which covered the second half of 2013, Sprint scored 68.2 and T-Mobile scored 64.3.

FirstNews Briefs: Sharp, Sprint, AT&T, SmartPlay, Intel, Samsung

August 19, 2014 10:26 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

SmartPlay Inc., a design services company with working in digital, analog, wireless software and...

Sprint Undercuts AT&T, Verizon with 4-Line, 20GB Plan for $160

August 19, 2014 10:07 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Sprint announced the Sprint Family Share Pack, a new set of shared data plans that...

Verizon Cuts Rate Plans with Discounts for Edge Customers

August 18, 2014 2:46 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

The new plan, which includes unlimited talk, text and 2GB of data for $60, or $50 if the...

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Contract's Up? What To Do Now

August 15, 2014 10:08 am | by Anick Jesdanun, AP Technology Writer | Articles | Comments

Although the discounts are typically less than the subsidies you're forgoing, it's the reverse for plans with at least 10 gigabytes of data. So big families sharing lots of data are probably better off with a full-price plan. That's also the case if you don't need a high-end phone, as the monthly fees for voice, text and data services factor in the costs of subsidizing the most expensive phones. 

AT&T's Stankey Pans Passpoint Technology for Residential Environments

August 13, 2014 12:46 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

Stankey said that the experience of using the technology, which is called Passpoint and is being developed by Qulacomm, wouldn't be up to AT&T's standards if it was deployed to improve capacity in a residential area. He said that customers walking between houses in a neighborhood would plagued by intermittent connectivity and interference due to the complexities of Wi-Fi. 

T-Mobile Urges FCC to Reserve Half of 600 MHz Spectrum for Smaller Carriers

August 13, 2014 11:42 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

T-Mobile is asking the FCC to consider reserving half or more of the 600 MHz spectrum cleared for auction for smaller carriers to bid on. In an FCC filing, T-Mobile said adjusting the spectrum reserve based on different clearing scenarios would “promote robust competition among service providers and ensure the continued vitality of four nationwide providers.”

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FirstNews Briefs: AT&T, AirPatrol, VMware, ViaSat, LG, Boost

August 13, 2014 10:44 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

Starting today in company-owned retail stores, AT&T is offering a new promotion  for iPhone 5s and 5c buyers who choose AT&T Next to get $200 off a new iPad purchased on a 2-year wireless agreement. The customer must sign a two-year wireless agreement for the iPad and use AT&T Next to purchase the iPhone.

T-Mobile: We’ll Overtake Sprint in Total Customers by Year’s End

August 7, 2014 10:33 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

In a press release touting his company’s new dominance in the prepaid space, T-Mobile CEO John Legere voiced the fairly safe assumption that T-Mobile would surpass Sprint in total customers by the end of 2014. “As a matter of fact, I’m going on record—I predict we’ll overtake Sprint in total customers by the end of this year. Not someday. Not next year. This year,” Legere said in a statement.

Will Scrapped Sprint-T-Mobile Deal Mean Lower Prices?

August 7, 2014 9:26 am | by Peter Svensson, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

Lower cellphone bills seem like a good thing for consumers. But T-Mobile and Sprint are already losing money and AT&T's profits are down. (Verizon, as the market leader, is doing fine.) This matters because U.S. wireless carriers invest more in their networks than European companies, and higher profits in the U.S. are a big part of the reason.

Timex, AT&T Partner on Smartwatch That Doesn’t Need a Phone

August 6, 2014 11:17 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Timex today announced the Ironman One GPS+, a smartwatch that connects directly to AT&T’s HSPA network without any help from a phone. Priced at $400, the One GPS+ comes with one free year of AT&T connectivity for customers in the U.S. and Canada. An AT&T spokesman said the carrier is not yet announcing pricing for service after the free year is up.

Verizon to FCC: Throttling Unlimited Users “Widely Accepted”

August 5, 2014 10:21 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Verizon has officially responded to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler after the Commissioner criticized the carrier’s decision to start slowing data speeds for some unlimited plan customers on its LTE network. The United States’ largest carrier called the practice “widely accepted,” according to Reuters. Verizon CEO Dan Mead, to whom the FCC’s letter was addressed, said the policy was in line with FCC principles.

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FCC May Spoil Sprint, T-Mo Joint Bidding Plans

August 4, 2014 10:25 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

“We must make sure that the biggest providers are not able to limit broad participation in the spectrum auction,” FCC Wireless Telecommunications Bureau Chief Roger C. Sherman wrote in a blog post. “Therefore, the item tentatively concludes that joint bidding arrangements between nationwide providers should not be allowed.”

Analysts: Iliad 'Free' Strategy Could Cripple U.S. Carrier Earnings

August 4, 2014 10:25 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

According new research from Strategy Analytics, Iliad's "Free" has had a dramatic impact on the French market, driving a 29 percent decline in service revenue and 19 percent decline in EBITDA since its launch. Strategy Analytics also notes that Iliad’s founder, Xavier Niel, is also an investor in Israel’s Golan Telecom...

Wideband LTE’s Time is Now as Carrier Aggregation Waits in the Wings

July 31, 2014 3:36 pm | by Ben Munson | Articles | Comments

Carrier aggregation is only one component of the emerging LTE-Advanced feature set but it’s received the most attention so far. Maybe that’s because it’s more fun to say than Relay Nodes but more likely it’s because of the phone-melting downlink speeds it’s capable of producing. South Korea’s SK Telecom earlier this year successfully stitched together three LTE bands (one 20 MHz and two 10 MHz) and was able to support speeds up to 300 Mbps.

SmartWatch Episode 16: The Rise and Fall of the Tablet in Carrier 2Q Earnings

July 31, 2014 3:09 pm | Videos | Comments

In this episode of SmartWatch, we take a look at the rise and possible fall of the tablet. As net phone additions lagged in the second quarter, the major carriers leaned on tablet additions to prop up their numbers. Big Red added 1.4 million postpaid subscribers, reporting that it had added 304,000 postpaid phone net additions and whopping 1.15 million postpaid tablets.

T-Mobile Adds 1.5M Net Customers, Closing On Sprint’s No. 3 Spot

July 31, 2014 10:07 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Though the net 220,000 subscriber losses Sprint posted represents an improvement for the carrier, it’s still significant. If both Sprint and T-Mobile maintain their current rates of subscriber growth/loss, it’s fair to imagine that T-Mobile will become the third largest carrier, in terms of customers, by the end of 2014.

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Wheeler to Verizon: Throttling Is Not Network Management

July 31, 2014 9:51 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

In a letter to Verizon CEO Dan Mead, the Chairman voiced his objections to plans Verizon announced last week to begin throttling LTE customers on unlimited plans that use an exorbitant amount of data. Verizon said the change will only affect about 5 percent of its users and it is being done in the name of network managment. 

T-Mobile Challenges with $100 10GB Plan

July 28, 2014 10:00 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

T-Mobile is launching a limited-time offer of $100 per month for unlimited talk and text plus 10GB of LTE for four lines. In a blog post, T-Mobile CEO John Legere gets in his customary shots at AT&T, calling the carrier’s similar plan for $160 a “joke.”

Amazon Shares Continue Slide as Fire Phone Launches

July 25, 2014 10:40 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

In its second quarter earnings, Amazon reported a $126 million loss even as revenue jumped by 23 percent. Shares fell 10 percent on the report. Many believe that continued investment in big projects like the development of the Fire Phone and the a new grocery delivery serivce are weighing profits at the company. 

AT&T Adds Over 1M Subscribers, Sees Record Low Churn

July 23, 2014 5:09 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

AT&T added more than one million postpaid subscribers during its second quarter, calling it the strongest gain in five years. The subscriber growth came in due to more than 700,000 postpaid smartphone net adds and 366,000 postpaid tablet net adds. But AT&T’s tablet growth fell well short of the 1.15 million postpaid tablets Verizon added during the same quarter.

FirstNews Briefs: AT&T, Lowe's, NetCracker, Sprint, Level 3, T-Mobile

July 23, 2014 9:32 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

AT&T announces Alcatel-Lucent S.A. and Fujitsu Network Communications Inc. as the newest vendors to join its User-Defined Network Cloud program. These two suppliers, and the previously announced Juniper Networks, will work with AT&T to build the User-Defined Network Cloud.

FirstNews Briefs: AT&T, Cavium, Quortus, Octoshape, Catenoid, ARRIS

July 21, 2014 10:50 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

ARRIS Group, Inc. and Wurl, Inc. today announced the launch of ARRIS Market—a new open platform for cable operators combining over-the-top (OTT) content with traditional programming services on ARRIS set-tops. The platform is standards-based and features an HTML5 interface that integrates thousands of OTT content choices.

Amazon’s First Fire Phone Ad Puts Content Ahead of Features

July 18, 2014 11:11 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

The company’s choice to highlight Prime over the much-hyped features of the phone like the 3D “dynamic perspective” further proves the Fire Phone is being positioned as a shopping machine. The phone’s other big feature is a dedicated Firefly button that recognizes video, music, print and objects before telling you how to buy the related item. The device is built for showrooming.

FirstNews Briefs: AT&T, T-Mobile, Ruckus Wireless, Bitglass, Jawbone

July 16, 2014 11:04 am | by Wireless Week Staff | News | Comments

Now through August 12th, customers can get $100 off when you buy an iPhone and iPad together at T-Mobile. Beginning July 20th, T-Mobile customers can take advantage of its EIP extended payment option on all accessories priced from $69-$250.

AT&T Puts Data in the Driver's Seat

July 15, 2014 2:06 pm | by Andrew Berg | Articles | Comments

"Each individual automaker will decide what's the best choice for them," Penrose said, noting that while GM is leaning heavily on AT&T's existing offerings-including day passes for those that don't want to commit to using data all the time-other automakers, like Tesla, have decided to include, or subsidize data, in the purchase price of the car. 

AT&T Calls T-Mobile’s Data Roaming Proposals Unlawful

July 11, 2014 10:34 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

In a blog post today, AT&T Vice President of Regulatory Joan Marsh said T-Mobile’s revised roaming agreement rules proposal would violate the Telecommunications Act and “push the Commission’s regime over the line into impermissible common carrier regulation.”

McAdam: Verizon Postpaid Additions Hit 1.4M in 2Q

July 10, 2014 2:42 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

Both Verizon and AT&T saw pressure on customer numbers in the first quarter of the year quarter, which could have been at least partially due to T-Mobile's disruptive promotions. AT&T marked just 625,000 postpaid additions in the first quarter. 

Carriers Failing Miserably at Location Data for Wireless E911 Calls

July 10, 2014 10:45 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

According to new data obtained from the FCC through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) filed by the Find Me 911 Coalition, only 10 percent of wireless 911 calls made in Washington D.C. in the first half of 2013 were delivered with accurate location information needed to find callers who are lost, confused, unconscious or otherwise unable to share their location. 

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