Blog Post

It’s Getting Cheaper to Love Ma Bell

Didn’t take too long for AT&T to start showing why it’s good to be big: You can use your own network to clobber competitors in the pricing game. Friday morning’s salvo is an offer of free, unlimited in-network calls between Cingular (excuse me, AT&T Wireless!) cellular and AT&T landline accounts.

According to the AP story, the service covers about 100 million numbers, which are phones held by users who are suddenly saving money without doing a damn thing. Sounds like that iPhone just got a lot cheaper, one more excuse for Om to indulge himself come June. And VoIP providers who thought they could win by underpricing the incumbents? Welcome to round two.

12 Responses to “It’s Getting Cheaper to Love Ma Bell”

  1. courtney benson

    We seen this all before: Ma Bell has to rid itself of Western Electric (first salvo 1968 via the carter phone decision) – overtime government says it has too much control. Alas, divesture and all the baby bells have to go out and fend for themselves. Years go by, baby bells get big and deside to buy up other baby bells, they become young adults. Meanwhile MAMA bell is still around and finds a way to get the babies back. Now she’s got total control and can start the monopoly all over again. Thought you were going to survive without the land line – we’ll see.

  2. From their pressrelease at “The service, dubbed AT&T Unity, is offered as a perk to subscribers who pay for both the $50 a month unlimited local and long-distance calling plan for their home or business and the $59.99 a month unlimited wireless plan.”

    So, if it is both unlimited, why would this offer matter?

    Besides, those who are conscious about price would go for Vonage or other VOIP phones, which are cheaper than cable or AT&T. But then again you need the internet from one of these monopolies :-(

  3. a couple caveats, reports the NYT (via

    The plans apply only to AT&T wireless packages starting at $59.99 for 900 anytime minutes a month.

    To subscribe to a AT&T Unity plan, a customer would need to have AT&T wireless service as well as a landline plan that offered unlimited local and long-distance service. AT&T’s unlimited local and long-distance landline service starts at $40 a month if bought online.