AT&T seeing ‘radical shift’ in cellphone usage | iLounge News


AT&T seeing ‘radical shift’ in cellphone usage

As part of a larger New York Times article discussing the problems some iPhone users are having with AT&T’s network, AT&T CTO John Donovan said the company has had a hard time keeping up with data demand. “It’s been a challenging year for us,” said Donovan. “Overnight we’re seeing a radical shift in how people are using their phones,” he said. “There’s just no parallel for the demand.” The report states that the company has delayed its rollout of MMS multimedia messaging for the iPhone, and has postponed computer-to-iPhone tethering as well, although it’s unclear whether the delays will last past the end of summer, as previously announced for MMS. Finally, AT&T states that the majority of the roughly $18 billion it will spend this year on its networks will go towards upgrades and expansions to help meet the demands placed on the 3G network.

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So they can support MMS for the millions of other phones but not for iPhones?

What a bunch of crap.

Posted by Ryan on September 3, 2009 at 11:38 AM (CDT)


The “shift” in cell phone use is due to the fact that I can’t make CALLS on my iPhone! I see more “call failed” notifications than text messages.

Posted by CydeWeyz on September 3, 2009 at 11:41 AM (CDT)


I don’t know if I’d characterize the issues AT&T are having as an “overnight shift” in data usage.

I think from day one iPhone users have been utilizing more data than voice, which has taxed the AT&T network. Add to that the fact that users in San Francisco and New York have consistently complained about the service in those cities since the iPhone’s introduction, I don’t think it’s fair to call it an overnight shift.

What I would be interested in hearing is what exactly they’re doing to alleviate the problem—where is coverage the worst, how many towers are going online, etc.

Even though I’m waiting for the iPhone to be made available to other carriers (i.e. Verizon), I’m forced to wonder if the flood of users to Verizon will cause the same coverage problems AT&T customers are currently experiencing.

And will an iPhone 4G, regardless of the carrier, make a difference in terms of speed and coverage?

Posted by cxc273 on September 3, 2009 at 12:05 PM (CDT)


I call BS on this.  The rest of the world is already using cell phones in a computer like matter and while most countries don’t have the same territory to provide coverage to as the U.S., it really is just an issue of scaling.  We pay more and get less in the U.S.  It is time for the FCC to step in and require changes, I appreciate the idea of competition, but frankly it has not produced the improvements the rest of the world takes for granted.

Posted by Dean on September 3, 2009 at 12:20 PM (CDT)


The reason that iPhone users use so much data is that it’s the only “smartphone” you can actually use - and, as CydeWeyz pointed out, call quality is horrible. It’s just easier to use the data services.

Posted by urbanslaughter on September 3, 2009 at 1:09 PM (CDT)


That’s the reason I sold my I-phone. Sure; I loved the fun I had with it. But it’s a phone too. And I got crappy signal with it. So I sold it & got a Blackberry. Now I can have my fun & make calls at the same time. I have no problem with AT&T. It’s the I-phone I had a problem with. I have talked to many others that had the same problem. They either bought a regular cell phone & an I-pod or did like I did & bought a Blackberry. And the Blackberry is soooooo much better than the I-phone. JMHO

Posted by Janet on September 3, 2009 at 1:29 PM (CDT)


Janet, I did the same thing. I ended up switching carriers to Sprint (it was cheaper than ATT’s blackberry plans). Now I do not drop calls. I had Cingular for years and my family still uses ATT, it is the iPhone. It gets horrible reception on the network, especially 3G. Data was slow in Philly as well, but was quite fast in Delaware which leads me to capacity issues being the likely cause. I do not miss the iPhone at all as a phone, as a mobile internet platform I certainly do.

Posted by J on September 3, 2009 at 6:37 PM (CDT)


That just wants to make me scream, “No shit, Sherlock!” They’ve finally noticed after 2+ years of the iPhone being on market.

Posted by Kevin C on September 5, 2009 at 7:48 PM (CDT)

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