Last week at CES 2015, the LG G Flex 2 was introduced to the world. Both Sprint and AT&T were quick to confirm the handset’s availability to their customers. We can add U.S. Cellular to the list of carriers offering the G Flex 2 because an FCC filing reveals that the carrier has its own variant. It supports LTE bands 5 and 12 in addition to the 850 and 1900 CDMA bands. All of these are supported by U.S. Cellular. The exact model number for the handset in this FCC filing is LG-US995.
It has generally been viewed as a positive development that the Nexus 6 is available on all major U.S. carriers and a simple swap of a SIM card is all that is needed for users to switch networks if they are in a position to do so. That doesn’t come without some risk though and Sprint customers seem to be suffering the ill effects at the moment as several Nexus 6 owners are having trouble receiving calls.
Last week tech companies were having a big time at CES 2015 showing off new technology, some of which involves automobiles. This week the North American International Auto Show is underway in Detroit, where automobile manufacturers show off their new vehicles, parts and services, some of which involves technology. The cross over between our cars and our mobile devices should be no surprise given the popularity of both in this country. At the NAIAS, Verizon has announced their latest foray into the world of the automobile industry, Verizon Vehicle.
Near the end of 2014, Verizon was faced with some criticism regarding one of its advertisements that featured a map of a competitor’s 4G LTE coverage. The ad compared its network to that of T-Mobile; however, it was greatly skewed in favor of Verizon. The map portrayed T-Mobile’s 4G LTE coverage as extremely scarce by removing the HSPA/HSPA+ coverage. Yesterday, Big Red uploaded an updated version of the ad which shows a much more purple map of the United States (above). The coverage is still dwarfed by Verizon’s but T-Mobile has committed heavily to its growth.
Hit the break for the videos.
In a bit of legal tap-dancing, AT&T has filed a motion to dismiss the U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) lawsuit against AT&T over data throttling on the grounds that the regulatory body lacks authority to do so. The legal grounds AT&T is basing this on is Section 5 of the FTC Act, in which a portion of that section helps draw distinction between the FTC’s jurisdiction and the U.S. Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) jurisdiction.
AT&T argues that because of its company’s status as a common carrier in mobile voice communication, then its data service should as well. Mobile data has not traditionally fallen under the purview of the FCC, but AT&T is claiming that data should be under FCC authority.
Music streaming service Deezer, which acquired Stitcher in October, is continuing to devour competitors. It has purchased Muve Music, the in-house music streaming service for Cricket Wireless. Muve Music became popular largely due to its bundling with Cricket Wireless plans. The carrier was able to add value for customers and this made Muve Music, believe it or not, one of the top music streaming services in the United States. With Deezer now in control, Muve Music will fade. Deezer is offering Muve Music subscribers a free 15-day trial of its service and then they can upgrade to a $6 per month subscription.
Hit the break for the full press release.
Hot on the heals of US Cellular, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile, Verizon has now joined the party to launch the curved variant of Samsung’s flagship phablet, the Galaxy Note Edge, in the United States.
The handset will set you back $399.99 on any of Big Red’s two-year plans or $799.99 unlocked. You can also bag yourself one for $33.33 per month if you happen to be a member of the carrier’s Edge program.
We are in a new year and that means companies are disclosing 2014 performances. For T-Mobile, it was an excellent year with substantial growth. The carrier gained 2.1 million customers in the final quarter of 2014 and that means 8.3 million were added throughout the entire year. So many people could be switching to T-Mobile because its 4G LTE network now covers 265 million people.
John Legere, T-Mobile CEO, had this to say about the carrier’s 2014 performance:
“We continued to take share from our competitors and attracted 8.3 million net customers in 2014 who were looking for value, simplicity, and transparency. While my competitors are hiding behind less valuable connected device subscriber additions and managing profit expectations to the downside, T-Mobile delivered over 2.1 million customers in Q4, while managing the balance between growth and profitability. Needless to say, 2014 was a record breaking year.”
Hit the break for T-Mobile’s highlights.
For years, AT&T offered rollover minutes on its mobile plans, going back all the way to the days of AirTouch and Cingular Wireless. (Remember Cingular?! They were awesome. I loved that orange jumping jack guy.) But with minutes ceasing to be valuable currency in the mobile space in recent years, Rollover disappeared.
Now AT&T, taking its cues from GSM rival T-Mobile, is resurrecting the Rollover concept, but in a form more fitting these modern times. AT&T Mobile Share customers will now be automatically enrolled in a monthly Rollover of data, and it rolls over across an entire shared account. It’s a nice bone to throw customers concerned about overages and should assuage billing fears associated with said overages.