AT&T now offering double data on 15 GB and higher Mobile Share Value plans through October 31st

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Today AT&T launched a new limited-time offer to new and existing subscribers featuring double data on Mobile Share Value plans 15 GB and up. The offer is good through October 31st, at which point the data buckets will revert to their regular sizes. Subscribers who sign up for the a new line on these plans before October 31st will be able to keep their double data for as long as they want it, even after the offer has expired.

At the new prices, a 30 GB shared data bucket will cost $130 per month, where the same amount of data would normally run for $225, coming out to a total savings of $95 per moth. While the usual offers only go up to 50 GB, there are now three larger buckets at 60, 80, or 100 GB, with most costing only a fraction of the price of the regular $50.

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AT&T says it will roll out WiFi Calling for iPhone in 2015

As Apple’s SVP of Marketing Phil Schiller introduced WiFi Calling support coming with the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and other iPhones with iOS 8 on supported networks earlier this week, it was noted that only T-Mobile and EE will provide support for the new feature at launch. WiFi Calling will allow users to take advantage of home or office WiFi connections, for instance, to improve call quality in otherwise potentially low network zones. Telecommunications site LightReading reports, however, that AT&T plans to add WiFi Calling support for its subscribers beginning next year.

Speaking Friday at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference, he said the carrier would use WiFi calling in 2015, but only as a complement to voice-over-LTE and 3G voice. [...]

“We’re very focused on making sure it’s a great experience for customers, but we see it as a complement, not a replacement,” he said. “We feel good about a great nationwide network with unlimited talk and text.”

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iPhone 6 and 6 Plus now available for pre-order through Apple and cell carriers

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As expected, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are both now available for pre-order on Apple’s online store and carrier websites, at least for some users. As the stores start to catch up to the load, more and more and customers should be able to get in their orders. Initial buyers seem to have the most luck on carrier websites as well as the Apple Store App. The store is almost an hour late in opening.

You can get the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 starting at $199 for the 16 GB model. Unlike previous years, there is no 32 GB option, which was replaced by a larger 64 GB model at $299 and a new 128 GB version for $399.

The iPhone 6 Plus sports the same internals as the smaller model accompanied by a 5.5-inch display and a camera with optical image stabilization. You can get the larger version of the phone in 16 GB for $299, 64 GB for $399, or 128 GB for $499 with a 2 year plan.

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China Telecom advertises intent to sell iPhone 6 supporting all networks with curious set of renders

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If you thought things were messy with U.S. networks, Verizon and Sprint using CMDA and AT&T and T-Mobile using GSM, things are even worse in China – with WCDMA, CDMA2000, CDMA1X, GSM, TDD-LTE and FDD-LTE all in use by different carriers in different combinations.

The iPhone 6 may be about to make life a whole lot easier, though, with Sina (via ZDNet) reporting that the model sold by China Telecom at least will support all of the wireless networks in use in the country, based on a Weibo post by the carrier. Admittedly the image used in the Weibo above looks a little different than the general consensus we’ve seen before – they were created by Tomas Moyano and Nicolàs Aichino, and China Telecom likely downloaded them from Bēhance.

That aside, the message they are sending might be more interesting…

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Apple posts job listing for VoLTE-experienced engineer ahead of expected voice-over-LTE support

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A new set of job listings noticed by LightReading continue to show Apple’s focus on implementing VoLTE, or voice-over-LTE, support for including high quality call quality on new iPhones.

Specifically, the job listings seek both a Cellular Systems Protocol Engineer with hands-on experience in wireless technologies including VoLTE and an iOS Wireless Communication Software Engineer with “SIP, RTP, and VoIP related protocols”, showing the company is continuing to beef up its expertise around the technology.

9to5Mac first reported that Apple is targeting voice-over-LTE support for iOS 8 and future iPhone models earlier this year in April:  Read more

T-Mobile offering Sprint, AT&T and Verizon castaways one year of free unlimited LTE data

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After an unsuccessful union with Sprint, T-Mobile is going after its former suitor’s customers, as well as its other competitors’ subcribers in the wireless world. Today, the magenta-colored carrier announced an aggressive promotional campaign that offers a free year of LTE data to castaways from AT&T, Verizon and of course Sprint.

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Sprint announces revamped family data plans with double data, individual plans coming soon

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Sprint has unveiled its newest family data plans in an attempt to win back customers that have fled to rivals AT&T and Verizon. The new plans offer twice as much data as the competition at about the same prices. It’s the latest move by the floundering carrier following the less-than-stellar reception of its recently-announced “Framily” plans.

The new plans allow up to ten lines with a shared data pool of 20 GB—paired an additional 2 GB per device as part of a limited-time offer—for a grand total of up to 40 GB of shared data through 2015. A pricing chart (below) breaks down how all of the charges in the new plans work, including an additional $10 per tablet and shared data packs of up to 60 GB.

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Apple Stores to start offering iPhones via carrier financing on Aug. 20th

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A significant number of Apple Stores in the United States will likely begin offering iPhone sales via the latest carrier financing programs later this month, according to several sources. We previously detailed that Apple Stores will soon offer iPhones on AT&T Next, Verizon Edge, and the T-Mobile Jump plans, and now we’ve learned some new information on the matter. We’re told that Apple is tentatively planning to begin rolling out the programs on Wednesday, August 20th as a pilot.

Of course, this could slip back a few days as this new program’s existence has not even been officially confirmed by Apple.  We’ve also been sent a couple of slides from internal Apple employee training materials showcasing what exact plans will be offered. The slide above details the differences between the plans, and the photo below compares the perks of each program. Also, it does not appear that Sprint’s latest financing offerings will be in the mix for Apple Stores anytime in the near future. Will you buy your iPhone 6 at the Apple Store via carrier financing? Tim Cook certainly thinks you should.

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Apple Stores to soon open up iPhone sales via AT&T Next, T-Mobile JUMP, & Verizon Edge

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Apple is preparing a significant expansion of its iPhone sales capabilities in its official retail stores, according to sources. Late in August, many Apple Stores in the United States will kick off a pilot program for customers to be able to purchase a new iPhone via the latest carrier upgrade programs: AT&T Next, T-Mobile JUMP, and Verizon Edge. Currently, iPhones bought at Apple Stores must either be purchased on a two-year deal, or at full-price (unlocked) with no contract…

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Apple & AT&T begin sending $40 checks to original 3G iPad buyers

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Apple and U.S.-based wireless carrier AT&T have begun sending out $40 checks to buyers of the original iPad WiFi + 3G in the United States over a “bait-and-switch” regarding the device’s data plan. The backstory is that when Steve Jobs announced the 3G iPad in January 2010, he announced a deal with AT&T for a $30/month unlimited iPad data plan.

When the 3G iPad launched in late April 2010, this plan was available, but AT&T eliminated the plan just about one month later in early June 2010. Lawsuits followed in the months and years following the shift in data plan strategy claimed that customers overpaid for the 3G iPad believing that they would be able to use the device to access unlimited amounts of data.

In September 2013, Apple and AT&T settled and agreed to pay $40 to each affected iPad buyer. For iPad buyers who had not yet purchased an unlimited data plan, a discount on the replacing 5GB plan was offered. The two companies began sending the checks out late last week, and they began arriving today. You can view the entire check stub and letter from the payout fund below:

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Apple stores begin selling & activating prepaid T-Mobile iPhones (Update: AT&T GoPhone too)

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Update #2: AT&T’s official statement: 

AT&T GoPhone prepaid service is now available in Apple Retail stores. Prepaid service is also available for iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 4S in AT&T and Cricket Wireless stores and online at att.com and at cricketwireless.com.

Update: A contact has confirmed that AT&T’s prepaid GoPhone plans are also supported by iPhones at Apple Retail Store locations as we previously reported to expect…

Following our report earlier this month that Apple was preparing to begin selling iPhones with prepaid plans through its retail stores, today T-Mobile confirmed iPhones with its prepaid service can now be purchased and activated in Apple stores across the country.

To go along with the launch, T-Mobile will offer discounts in the form of $50 off the device for prepaid plans and a $50 iTunes gift card for iPhones activated on its Simple Choice postpaid plans.

T-Mobile customers can now purchase and activate an iPhone with T-Mobile prepaid service in more than 250 Apple stores across the nation. In addition, for a limited time, customers who purchase a new iPhone with T-Mobile prepaid service can get $50 off the device, and those who buy a new iPhone with a T-Mobile Simple Choice postpaid plan can get a $50 iTunes gift card.

T-Mobile’s fine print notes: “Must activate device in-store. Limit 1 device per customer. Offer only valid with activation of  $50 or $70 worth of service. Offer subject to change.” That lines up with our earlier report that Apple stores would offer the prepaid iPhones on -T-Mobile’s’ $50/month (1GB LTE data) and $70/month (5GB LTE data) unlimited data plans. Read more

Apple looks to boost iPhone sales in stores with new pre-paid & month-to-month plans

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Apple is preparing to enhance its Apple Store-based iPhone sales operations in the United States around pre-paid and month-to-month plans in order boost sales, according to a source briefed on the upcoming initiatives. For the first time in U.S. Apple Stores, customers will be able to purchase an iPhone at full-price and then connect the phone to a pre-paid plan or a month-to-month plan within the store. Previously, iPhone customers could only buy full-priced iPhones as unlocked devices then connect the devices to pre-paid plans or month-to-month plans via a previously purchased SIM-card or through a carrier store…

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