Tuesday, July 03, 2007

"Indoor toilets are miraculous, but you take them for granted after a while."

by Ken Houghton

The bold, daring, innovative, and technically-savvy thing to do last Friday—not coincidentally, the last Business Day of the Quarter&mash;was to drop two bills over the next two years subsidizing SBC's takeover of AT&T.

The bad news is that "the best phone that anybody has ever made" hitched its wagon to a falling star:
Data congestion left the mobile operator red-faced, and buyers fuming. Because most of AT&T's network uses an ancient, time sharing 2.5G technology - placing the USA on a par with Cambodia and Sierra Leone - the data congestion impacted voice callers, too.

(Apple decided against supporting the thoroughly modern 3G CDMA networks used by Sprint PCS and Verizon. Contrast this with the much smaller Palm, which managed to launch its Treo 650 in 3G CDMA and EDGE versions.)

Absolving Apple of this odd decision to cripple the iPhone, DKIB instead gives AT&T a brisk slap.

"AT&T has spent next to nothing on its GSM/EDGE network in the past nine months," notes DKIB analyst Pers Lindberg, who points out that in Q1, AT&T's capital expenditure for wireless was around $500m, a tenth of its fiscal year budget of $5bn.

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