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AT&T hopes for iPhone to be synonymous with the company in five year exclusive

Apple’s iPhone is arguably this year’s most hotly anticipated consumer device. AT&T already accelerated its plans to rebrand the Cingular properties in preparation of the iPhone’s arrival – and apparently, its efforts may be well placed as the iPhone could be an AT&T-exclusive for five years, according to a USA Today story.

Being an AT&T-exclusive means that the iPhone will remain a GSM phone, leaving it clearly out of reach for CDMA wireless users. Verizon Wireless and Sprint are both CDMA shops, and customers of those carriers who wish to get the iPhone will have no other choice but to make the move to AT&T.

T-Mobile is another GSM carrier in the U.S., and its network would likely be able to support the iPhone’s calling features, but AT&T will be the only company authorized to officially sell and market the iPhone. Furthermore, all iPhone’s sold through AT&T will be ‘locked’ to the network, disallowing those phones to connect to another carrier even with a different SIM card.

"I'm glad we have (the iPhone) in our bag," says Stan Sigman, CEO of wireless at AT&T. "Others will try to match it, but for a period of time, they're going to be playing catch-up."

According to data collected by Forrester Research, about 78 percent of U.S. households have a mobile phone. Charles Golvin, an analyst at Forrester, believes anybody who wants a cell phone has one. The other 22 percent without cell phones, he says, "are the very young, the very old and the economically challenged" – none of which are target markets for the iPhone.

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RE: Who Will Buy It Anyway
By aguilpa1 on 5/23/2007 10:51:15 AM , Rating: 2

If my teenager asked I need $6 to get a magazine, I say sure (it somewhat helps with their reading skills)

If they said I need $60 to get a new pair of jeans, I say sure as long as its a good quality material and they will wear it more than once.

If they say I need $600 to get a new cell phone (I don't care who's it is) I say NO. and If you want to negotiate, than give me 2 semestars of straight A's and you pay for half of it.

RE: Who Will Buy It Anyway
By ninjit on 5/23/2007 11:22:02 AM , Rating: 2
You're a better parent than most then.

A live in the La Jolla area of San Diego, and you commonly see high-school kids driving around in cadillacs, mercedes, etc.
The high-school parking lots in the area look like high-end dealerships.

Unfortunately, the general rule of thumb is that even if the parents are self-made (and hence aware of how fortunate they are), the kids have little to no appreciation of it.

RE: Who Will Buy It Anyway
By slacker57 on 5/23/2007 1:55:45 PM , Rating: 2
You're a better parent than most then.

Exactly what I was thinking. Helicopter parents are too much the norm these days, and they can't bear to think of the self-esteem hit little Jimmy will take if you or anyone else says no to him, so they will buy whatever they want to keep him from crying. I wouldn't be surprised to see the second graders that my girlfriend teaches running around with iphones, much less teenagers.

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