Thursday, December 3, 2009

Defending AT&T

After the recent Consumer Reports article placed AT&T at the bottom of their ratings, my first reaction was, "We told you so." I can see why my personal view of AT&T agrees they belong at the bottom of the barrel as I live in the market reviewed as AT&T's worst. But now is the time to give AT&T a little love.

AT&T suffers from having very high expectations primarily from iPhone users. Their phones are real data hogs and that has changed the perception of what once was a good network to one that's lacking . The network didn't get worse, our expectations rose up faster than AT&T expected. It's actually a nice position to be in, but it's a sticky marketing problem.

As AT&T works toward adding capacity and expanding their 3G network, things will slowly get better. It will take some time before users realize it as reputations are harder to repair than cell sites...but repair it they will. There are many other challenges ahead as well. AT&T needs to upgrade its newly-acquired Centennial and Alltel sites to 3G, which may hold up upgrades elsewhere.

It was unwise for AT&T to react to Verizon's 3G "map" campaign, but it was wise to end their legal threats. Now what will their lawyers do? Give 'em some overalls and get them out to the cell sites. There's work to be done.


abqdave said...

I am a recent IPhone convert, and I waited to get mine until after a friend bought one so he could be the AT&T guinea-pig. I read the same horror stories as everyone else has. He switched from Verizon (which I have also had in the past), my partner and I switched from TMobile.

The verdict from all of us...AT&T is just fine. No problems. They have a couple of dead areas, but so doesn't everyone. Their data network is faster than I remember Verizon's being (that was a few years ago).

I called them with questions on my first bill. Their customer service was top-notch, equal to TMobile's excellent customer service. And the bill was 100% accurate.

The salesperson in the store was good for all of us. Everything that was promised came true. I even found I get a discount through my employer, which the sales person helped me find. as good as anyone else, good sales experience, good customer service, accurate bill, and the IPhone. Couldn't ask for much more.

William said...

At&t is easily the favorite carrier in Louisiana, and most of the people I know of are having problems here. That being said, Bill's right. The problem with At&t isn't it's network so much as it is the iPhone. They've been around for 130 years for a reason, and they'll get things straightened out eventually. For now in Central Louisiana, we sit and wait to see which Centennial areas will become Verizon.

Scott W said...

We have the list of counties going to Verizon at

William said...

Scott, thank you very much for updating me on the Centennial/Verizon transfer! If you have any information on a timetable for the divesture, please give us an update on that as well.

Scott W said...

William, AT&T says "1st Quarter, 2010. News release.