Why for me the AT&T buyout of T-Mobile means I’ll cancel my contract as soon as I can

AT&T and T-Mobile US announced this week that AT&T will be buying T-Mobile US from Deutsche Telekom for $39 billion. This seems like great news for AT&T since they’ll benefit from T-Mobile’s existing network, but everything to lose for existing T-Mobile customers. In no particular order, here’s why:

  • AT&T will become the only GSM based mobile carrier in the US. If one of your criteria is to buy a phone that allows you to easily roam on another networks worldwide and easily swap SIM cards, then your only option will be with AT&T. Sprint apparently offer some CDMA/GSM dual technology phones, but since their US network is CDMA, they don’t have many of the dual phones on offer.
  • Find me one AT&T customer (past or present) who says they love AT&T’s customer service. I’ve been with T-Mobile for over 4 years and every interaction with them has been awesome, either in person or over the phone.
  • Find me one AT&T customer who will tell you that AT&Ts coverage is great
  • Find me one AT&T customer who will tell that they’ve never had a dropped call. From memory I think I may have had one dropped call once on T-Mobile, but I can’t honestly remember (any AT&T customer reading that will probably raise their eyebrows at this point. “Huh? Really? I get a dropped call at least once a day”
  • Compare T-Mobile’s plans with AT&T. My current plan on T-Mobile with unlimited data (throttled at 5GB), unlimited texts, 1500 anytime minutes, free nights and weekends is $65. I just looked at AT&T’s site and the equivalent ¬†options to get me anything close to the service I currently get with T-Mobile (900 mins, unlimited texts, 4GB data capped) will cost me $130 a month. That’s almost TWICE what I currently pay. No thankyou.

So, I plan to stay with the merged company for as long as my current contract is in play and I get the same service for the same cost, but as soon as anything starts changing to the service or my plan to get rolled onto an AT&T equivalent then I’ll be looking to terminate my contract. I have no plan whatsoever so pay $120 a month for what I currently get. No thankyou AT&T.

Macs – not just for content creators anymore

The interesting thing about Apple’s focus on iOS development, the iPhone and the iPad is that the focus and push on these devices is clearly focused at ‘content consumption’ and not ‘content creation’ that Macs have been traditionally known for.

Think back over the years, the Mac as a desktop computer has always been known as ‘the’ choice for content creation, especially media rich content. Now they’ve got both sides of the equation covered, and have devices for content creators and content consumers.

Given the overwhelming success in sales of the iPhone and the iPad, I wonder whether internally Apple is thinking that their future is more focused on new content consumption type devices like the iPad, or if they will consciously keep their foot on both sides of the fence and cater for both types of consumer?

Browser security beaten in pwn2own hacker contest

Browser security topples this week, first Safari then IE8, in a contest to demonstrate the ability to execute native code and save files to the host machine’s file system¬†via vulnerabilities in the browsers.

Safari was first to fall, followed by IE8. No results for Chrome yet, and no contestant signed up to challenge Firefox. Mobile phone browser next up.