AT&T has just announced it is making good on its promise to allow devices like the iPhone 4S, as long as it's on a tiered or data share plan, the ability to utilize Apple's FaceTime video calling service on its cellular network. The rollout is slated to take several months and will be applied automatically by AT&T for eligible customers. Still, those out there like myself who have a kung-fu grip on their unlimited plans are left out in the cold. AT&T did state in their blog recently that they would assess FaceTime impact for unlimited users on its network. So, hopefully, the AT&T network isn't as fragile as they are alluding to and can hold up enough so that their most loyal customers, like myself, won't be out of the loop for too long. Fingers crossed.
When FaceTime over Cellular launched in September 2012, we explained that we wanted to roll it out gradually to ensure the service had minimal impact on the mobile experience for all of our customers.
As a result of ongoing testing, we’re announcing AT&T will enable FaceTime over Cellular at no extra charge for customers with any tiered data plan using a compatible iOS device.
This means iPhone 4S customers with tiered plans will be able to make FaceTime calls over the AT&T cellular network. AT&T previously made FaceTime over Cellular available to customers with a Mobile Share plan and those with an LTE device on tiered plans.
Of course, FaceTime over Wi-Fi remains available for all customers who have a compatible iPhone or iPad.
We have already begun updating our systems and processes and expect to start rolling the update out to customers on an ongoing basis beginning in the next couple of weeks. Customers do not need to do anything—the update will be applied automatically over the next few months.
Only AT&T offers benefits like the ability to talk and surf at the same time, the fastest download speeds using AT&T 4G LTE, and a variety of flexible plan options to meet customers’ needs. - AT&T
Read More | AT&T
All you Samsung Galaxy Rugby Pro users on AT&T, listen up! We just got word from your carrier that the long-awaited update that'll allow you to upgrade your device to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean is now available. That means that your push-to-talk capable device will now let you use feature like Google Now, Quick Settings, and even DriveMode, which aims to prevent texting while driving. When you're ready to upgrade, just hit the link below.
Read More | Galaxy Rugby Pro Android 4.1 upgrade
We've come to the end of another year, and as we wave goodbye to 2011, we figured it was only fitting that we share the most popular stories published on Gear Live this year, as determined by our readers (we've also got the top ten most read stories regardless of publish date, as well as the ten most popular Gear Live videos of 2012!) These are the ten stories that were read the most, and when you consider that fact, it's pretty surprising to see what made the list. Let's kick it off with our most read story of the year:
iPhone 5 vs. iPhone 4S vs. iPhone original:
iPhone 5 certainly got a lot of attention this year, and our image gallery comparing it to previous iPhone designs served as our most popular post in all of 2012.
The airwaves are running out, and you may've noticed it from the data diet your phone company has probably went on, or from the inability to send texts from busy areas in the city.
The FCC has approved the transfer of 608 spectrum licenses to AT&T that cover about 82 percent of the US population. Don't start streaming those 1080p movies from your data plan just yet, as the new spectrum isn't going in effect any time soon. It'll be years before any of us can take advantage of it, we're afraid.
Read More | FCC
If you're an AT&T customer sporting a Samsung Galaxy S III, today is the day that you finally get to update your smartphone to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean. This means you get access to Google Now, better notifications, low light photo mode, as well as all the fixes and knowledge that you're on the (almost) latest and greatest. Get the Android 4.1 update now by hitting the source link.
Read More | Samsung
After launching its new 4G LTE service in Seattle days before the iPhone 5 launch, AT&T is now launching its faster data service in Tacoma, Washington, as well as Federal Way, Lakewood, Puyallup, and Auburn. Additionally, LTE expansion upgrades are now live in Seattle, Bothell, Bellevue, Kirkland, Edmonds, Lynnwood, Renton, Redmond, Tukwila, and Woodinville. AT&T plans to officially announce the enhancements tomorrow. Of course, you'll need an LTE-compatable AT&T device to take advantage of the faster speeds.
AT&T has announced on its public policy blog that FaceTime over cellular will be available to iPhone and iPad users with several caveats. Users must have LTE versions of iPads and iPhones and must be on a tiered plan. Previously FaceTime on AT&T was only available for customers on mobile shared plans. However, the rollout is not immediate. AT&T expects it to take 8-10 weeks, which is unusually slow. The decision has come after much pressure from customers, public advocacy groups, and the media.
Still, AT&T's policy change is a half-hearted attempt as it doesn't fully cave in to demands. It omits a larger group of customer that are not on LTE from using FaceTime over cellular on 3G and "4G." Also, it continues its hostility toward customers of grandfathered unlimited data plans on any cellular mode. The FCC has warned that discriminatory practices on citizen owned spectrums will not be tolerated in accordance with net neutrality regulations. AT&T is cherry picking customers based on monetary gains and not necessarily reasons of management of network congestion.
Read More | AT&T
After a ridiculously long wait, it's finally been announced that AT&T will be selling launching the Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 Windows Phones this Friday, November 9th, with pre-orders starting tomorrow. Pricing has also been revealed, and things are looking good there as well, with the flagship 920 costing $99.99 with two-year contract, and including a wireless charging dock. If you'd prefer the 820, that one will sell for $49.99 on contract. Now that the pricing is public, anyone planning on picking up one of the new Nokia Windows Phone 8 devices?
What you see in the image above is the evolution of mobile phone SIM card design over the past four years. The largest in the image, known as the mini-SIM, was used for quite a while as the standard in GSM cell phones. However, as smartphones began to rise in popularity, drop is cost, and brought increased functionality, it was determined that the mini-SIM just wasn't mini enough. It took up too much of the precious real estate that mobile phone manufacturers needed for other things. Thing like a GPS radio, Wi-Fi, larger batteries, dock connectors, graphics chips, and more. And so began the start of the shrinking SIM card.
Oh man--looks like the Nokia Lumia 920 is set to drop in November, and it's going to be an AT&T exclusive. That's unfortunate, since it's the new hotness from Nokia that Microsoft may just be hanging it's hat on as it pertains to Windows Phone 8, so it's a little odd that the 4G LTE smartphone won't be available on Verizon, the company that has the largest LTE network by far. The Lumia 820 should launch alongside the 920, but that is more of a mid-range phone rather than a top-of-the-line model, and that one should make an appearance on multiple carriers. That said, if you're interested in one of the colorful (yellow, black, cyan, red, white) 920 models, you're gonna have to go with AT&T come this November. No word yet on pricing.
Be sure to check out the top 5 features of Lumia 920.
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