Erin Burnett is a reporter on CNBC and she has an iPhone. She is one of those AT&T customers who experience network dropouts, presumably in the New York City metro area. Often, she will add a small kicker to a story about AT&T, Apple or the iPhone with a comment like, "Even though you'll get dropped calls..." or "If the service works..." based on her personal experience. This is a bad thing for a journalist to do, but I'm sure we feel her frustration. Viewers should not form their opinion of AT&T based on her experience, but they do.
Yesterday, she appeared on the CNBC segment of Stop Trading with Mad Money's Jim Cramer, and she prefaced their discussion with her discovery that the iPhone troubles may be based with the phone itself and not AT&T. Erin admitted that her iPhone worked perfectly in the 12 countries she had visited recently, contradicting her "aha" moment.
Jim shared that Apple has an excellent track record of fixing bugs, and if the problems are indeed with the iPhone itself, Apple will fix them. Since Erin's phone works just fine in Dubai and Nigeria, I would say it's more likely to be a network problem, but AT&T also fixes their problems. If we just didn't love our iPhones so much.
On a related note, Jim Cramer this week recommended the large cellular tower owners as a great investment. He called the need for more wireless capacity a "tsunami" and the carriers need to keep adding bandwidth on these cell sites or they'll get soaked.