Is AT&T’s iPhone Exclusivity Now Ending In 2011?


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At last week’s iPad event, you could hear the audience let out a collective sigh after Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) confirmed the 3G version of the tablet would be running on AT&T’s network.

Now, it is starting to appear that AT&T (NYSE: T) will keep its hold on the iPhone for the next 12 to 18 months, rather than it ending in mid-2010 — as previously assumed, GigaOm reports. The new timeline was outlined in a note issued by Jonathan Chaplin, an analyst with Credit Suisse. He writes: “We believe there is a 75 percent probability that AT&T keeps exclusivity in 2010.”

Chaplin said he arrived at this conclusion based on two things: There’s no compelling evidence that it does end in 2010, and if it did, AT&T can continue to pay generous incentives to maintain the exclusivity.

While those don’t reasons don’t offer hard evidence either, Chaplin also surmises that if AT&T is granted the additional exclusivity period, it will have enough time to solve its network problems, so that when it does expire, there won’t be a mass exodus of consumers.

But there’s other reasons why their won’t be a mass exodus. Future carriers that will offer the phone may charge higher data rates, and consumers won’t necessarily be able to take their iPhone from one network to another. For example, if you look at the UK, where nearly all of the carriers are now selling the iPhone, not a lot has changed since O2


Cell Phone Spy

I would have totally gotten an iPhone but I have got such a great plan with Sprint on the old unlimited Sero plan for $30 a month, I just couldn’t see myself going from $30 a month to $99 or more a month for the same minutes and features with the only difference being the phone. Now the iPhone is really cool but it would have cost me an extra $60 x 24 = $1440 for it over the next 24 months. I can get 2 42′ plasmas for that price difference. I am running a HTC Touch Pro on the sero plan and am only paying $30 a month for it so I guess I am doing pretty good.

Shaden Freude

@JDOG “…Why would Apple want to put there iPhone on a network that won’t allow it to do all its capable of…”

There are 100M untapped, potential iPhone users, that’s why. Everyone (most) AT&T users who want an iPhone have an iPhone, the well is getting dry. Verizon offers 70M new targets to go after.


I don’t understand where these rumors of AT&T’s demise came from. When the iPhone was introduced 1/07 with rollout in 6/07 every story said there was a 5 year exclusive contract. Unless Apple wanted to buy out the contract you won’t see other carriers before 2012.

I really wish we could get an iPhone on something other than AT&T. But with Google Voice increasing heat and Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile all decreasing unlimited nationwide to $69.99/month I believe we’re going to see further decreases of another $15-$30 per month. Let’s hope!

David Nies, CEO


“Similar to AT&T, O2’s iPhone users have suffered from many network meltdowns, including one as recently as this weekend in which users had absolutely no data service”

So when has AT&T had no data service and why woudl you feel you need to throw that out there? MAybe you “ANAYST” and “JOURNALSY” should stop guessing, stop belive some of the HYPE put out there by NYC and SF Bloggers and begin to understand one main thing about Wireless Service. IT isn’t about being able to roam in a little town in idaho (no offense Idaho folks) it’s all about local coverage. You have bought into all this Verizon map BS versus actually digging in doing research and reporting facts.

Shame on you and shame on publications such as Businessweek


This is interesting so maybe AT&T perceives it has to fight to keep the iPhone. It will continue to upgrade the network and work with us. Outside of a few spotty areas, I have not had much trouble with my phone. Instead of ridiculing AT&T, we should thank them for bringing the iPhone into the consumer market at an affordable price. I can honestly admit, the iPhone has changed my family’s life.


You will not see an iPhone on Verizon before LTE becomes common. I really can’t see Apple making an iPhone with CDMA especially after those Verizon commercials. Also an iPhone on Verizon now would not work the same as every other iPhone in the world. Verzion CDMA will not allow data and voice at the same time. Besides LTE Verizon will have to drop any demand to put it’s name on the phone and not have any controls over features or software. I know Apple submitted to China on Wifi as a feature but 600 millions subscribers is a whole lot more than 85 million!


fine. Now I can simply get some other smartphone from Verizon. I WAS waiting to see the iPhone come to Verizon, but I may not live that long.


i’ve been waiting, my family plan with 3 phones contracts expire at the end of April, of this year with Verizon, we will be moving to the iphone and att, location central nj and the coverage is just as good as verizons


Why would Apple want to put there iPhone on a network that won’t allow it to do all its capable of. Makes sense that it stays on ATT. Until the competition actually steps up and offers a product that allows the iPhone to work to its fullest capacity, then why would Jobs give it to someone else???? Its the best option, no matter what your personal experience is.I am glad it stays with ATT, I live in Denver and my iPhone works AWESOME here.

Randy B

It’s all about the money…no other company is willing to give Apple as big a cut of the monthly revenue as ATT. Until that changes, and it doesn’t apppear that it will soon, ATT the one.

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