AT&T has made changes to its data throttling policies in response to complaints from unlimited plan users. Now instead of slowing down data speeds when a customer reaches 2GB of usage, the company will take this action at the 3GB mark. The policy changes brings data throttling of unlimited customers in line with the revised upper-tier 3G data plan which provides 3GB of usage.
Unlimited plans have been grandfathered in for some time now, with new subscribers required to select from tiered data plans and pay extra fees if they exceed the limit. The actions of AT&T, which slowed down data speeds for the top 5 percent of unlimited data plan users prompted criticism from several quarters, including lawyers.
Unlocking the iPhone has always required jailbreaking and paying close attention to custom firmware and basebands. Now thanks to a simple process, the iPhone 4S can be unlocked without jailbreaking. This process makes use of a bug in iOS 5 and allows the iPhone to be used on T-Mobile. Of course, there are some caveats.
As OS X Daily reports, some users have had to go through the process several times to make it work. This process requires an AT&T (GSM) iPhone 4S, and will not work with the Verizon or Sprint iPhone. Also, the T-Mobile SIM card must be cut down to Micro SIM size before the process begins in order to fit in the iPhone 4S.
For those iPhone lovers who hate two-year contracts Apple will be offering the iPhone 4S unlocked in the United States. The unlocked version is already available for pre-order on the Apple online store at unsubsidized, contract-free prices. Buyers can expect to pay a $450 premium above carrier discount prices to avoid a contract, making the iPhone 4S 16GB come in at $649 with free shipping.
This puts the 32GB at $749 and the 64GB capacity model at $849. Of course the unlocked version comes in black or white, however it will only be compatible with GSM networks around the globe. This means that iPhone 4S users in the US will be limited to AT&T or T-Mobile as a choice of carriers. Currently Verizon and Sprint will require the iPhone 4S to be locked into a two-year contract to be activated on their networks.
It looks a lot like the iPhone 4, but Tim Cook promised the latest Apple iPhone is "all new inside." The Apple CEO unveiled the iPhone 4S (not the iPhone 5) in Cupertino on Tuesday. The new iPhone features a dual-core A5 processor, 8-megapixel camera, and GSM and CDMA radios.
The iPhone 4S offers 8-hours of talk time (3G), and six hours of web browsing time (3G). It also features image stabilization, facial recognition, 1080p video recording capabilities and the new Siri voice control feature.
The iPhone 4S will be available in the US from AT&T, Verizon and Sprint on October 14th. Pre-orders begin this Friday, October 7th. The 16GB model will cost you $199, the 32GB version is $299 and 64GB version will retail for $399.
ChangeWave Research contacted 4,068 iPhone 4 users to get a detailed comparison of Verizon Wireless vs. AT&T Mobility services. According to the survey results, AT&T customers experienced dropped calls almost three times as often in the past 90 days as those with a Verizon iPhone 4. Whereas Verizon subscribers reported a dropped call rate of 1.8 percent, AT&T clocked in at 4.8 percent for the same question.
You might think these numbers would pose a problem for the AT&T customer service department. Actually, when looking at overall customer satisfaction with their iPhone 4, both companies came out even. Very satisfied and somewhat satisfied customers together made up 98 percent of respondents from both AT&T and Verizon.
Apple has released detailed support information explaining the differences between iPhone calling features on the AT&T and Verizon networks. Because AT&T Mobility uses GSM technology and Verizon Wireless has a CDMA network, each iPhone 4 has different calling capabilities. Recently it was revealed that Verizon's network suffers from conference calling limitations, but there are other differences as well. The table below was released by Apple to illustrate the details.
With all of the anti-iPhone advertising coming out of Verizon lately you'd think the company had no interest at all in dealing with Apple. Apparently this is not the case, considering the words of Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg during a third quarter earnings conference call.
Seidenberg explained that the decision to launch an iPhone on Verizon's network is "exclusively in Apple's court. Obviously we would be interested if they thought it would make sense for them to have us as a partner."
Look out Verizon fans, the iPhone may be coming sooner than you think. AT&T must be nervous considering reports that the other wireless giant, Verizon Wireless, is currently in high-level talks with Apple about the iPhone. Vodafone, the co-owner of Verizon Wireless, already offers the iPhone in European markets.
It's possible that Apple is considering a CDMA version of the iPhone after all. Observers are predicting that if Verizon and Apple can strike a deal, the iPhone will hit Verizon shelves as early as 2010. AT&T has been trying to extent its exclusive arrangement with Apple beyond its expiration sometime next year into 2011.