[Photo Credit: 9to5Mac]
AT&T has been rated by Consumer Reports as the worst carrier in customer service late last year, but this did not stop the nation’s largest 4G carrier from having record smartphone sales in the last three months of 2012. The carrier reported that it sold 10 million smartphones in Q4, beating the 9.4 million sales it had in Q4 of 2011. Ralph de la Vega, AT&T President, said in a press release statement that the company saw an average of 110,000 sales each day at its carrier branches. The iPhone 5, along with a wide highway of Android devices, are to blame for the carrier’s success in getting new customers onto its network. A Consumer Reports Study also noted that the iPhone 5 was ranked third by iPhone 5 owners on AT&T’s 4G network. The iPhone 5 did not rank in the top three at Verizon or T-Mobile.
AT&T’s financial success at the end of 2012 has only fueled the carrier’s work, as AT&T now has new plans for 2013. One new plan in the works for the largest American phone carrier is the creation of a Near Field Communication (NFC) wallet program for iPhone users. Called “ISIS,” the mobile wallet application will allow iPhone users to have the same advantage that Android users have had over iOS users for some time now. The ability to pay for our expenses with fewer cards in our wallets (and fewer chances for robberies than before) is a technological achievement and one that even iOS must learn to embrace. While Apple has filed a patent with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), it has not yet implemented NFC into its iPhones because, as Apple VP Phil Schiller said, NFC does not help consumers in any real way. AT&T, however, is pressing forward with its plans, whether Apple decides to invest in NFC or not.
While ISIS is the mobile application through which NFC is achieved, iPhone 4/4S users will need a device to aid their NFC purchases over-the-counter. To help with this, AT&T has teamed up with Incipio, inventor of the CASHWRAP Mobile Wallet Case, to offer Incipio’s NFC case to its customers. Now, all you need to do to pay for your purchases is download the ISIS application and place the CASHWRAP Mobile Wallet Case on your iPhone 4/4S. The case debuted at International CES 2013 and will soon be available for $59.99-$69.99.
Are you ready for an AT&T video subscription service? Well, it’s here. AT&T has crated its own video subscription service that delivers its “U-Verse Screen Pack” for $5 per month. Peter Kafka of All Things Digital talked with an AT&T representative who provided the following titles for its monthly video service:
- Lars and the Real Girl
- Legends of the Fall
- Summer in Genoa
- The Wedding Planner
- Hotel Rwanda
- Charlie’s Angels
- Assassin’s Code
- American Teacher
Some have said that AT&T’s video service will rival Netflix; nevertheless, if these titles are any indication, AT&T will not trouble Netflix at all. With AT&T, however, anything’s possible – so we’ll have to let this one play out over the course of 2013 and beyond.