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AT&T Fighting Verizon Over iPhone Users, Offers Microcells



Our own Kevin Purcell received an offer for a free Microcell from AT&T, less than a week before Verizon begins selling the iPhone 4 to new customers. As he wrote over at, Kevin finds the timing ‘interesting.’

While AT&T has drastically improved reception in some areas since the launch of the iPhone 4, it’s been widely reported by early reviewers that call reliability and clarity is markedly better on the Verizon iPhone 4. To many people, of course, being able to place and receive calls reliably is the most important feature of any phone and wireless plan.

Kevin’s family has four iPhones, which means he’s a very valuable customer in AT&T’s books and just the kind of family that Verizon would love to woo. Kevin’s mentioned that he has no plans to switch to Verizon, but there are countless AT&T customers that have had enough with dropped calls. I’m not surprised at all that AT&T is sending out another batch of Microcells. I am surprised that AT&T’s waited so long to do whatever it can to satisfy its most valuable customers.

This isn’t the first time AT&T’s offered free Microcells to customers. My brother’s family received a free AT&T Microcell last summer, which means we can now actually call each other when he’s home.

AT&T answered my phone reception prayers by placing a small cell site less than 100 feet away from my old home’s bedroom window. We moved three months ago to a quieter neighborhood and I was worried about reception, but after doing some testing (before committing to the move), I found the new place had solid AT&T reception.

While the Microcell improves reception at home, it doesn’t do any good when iPhone users venture outside. While I’ve been impressed with AT&T’s speedy 3G data speed, I still face a number of challenges placing and receiving calls when I’m mobile.

For now, Verizon has the edge when it comes to voice quality and I may switch providers when the new iPhone is launched next summer. I don’t think it makes sense to switch networks mid-contract and get locked into a device that will most likely be replaced in June. We still haven’t seen what’ll happen to Verizon’s network once millions of  iPhones are unleashed on it.  Then there’s the whole money issue. Am I dissatisfied with AT&T enough to pay a pair of ETF’s, plus pay $600 for a pair of new iPhones? Not really.



  1. Jim in SF

    02/04/2011 at 8:46 pm

    I am counting the hours until I can place my order on the 9th. I have two AT&T phones, both of which will be going to Verizon, because I often drop more calls in a day on AT&T than I did in a year on Verizon. AT&T, high data speeds are great for a laptop data card (which I also have, and will leave connected), but no substitute for being able to maintain a phone conversation on a device whose primary purpose is making voice calls.

  2. F Savala

    04/23/2011 at 6:51 am

    More and more I realize I made a big mistake buying your service on my iPhoneG4. I am never able to complete a call without a bad connection and at lest 2 to 3 drop calls. The Apple store blames you for the bad service and AT&T blames the Apple store. Both companies are behaving like elementary kids. Quit being such liars. As soon as I am able to, I will change both my landline and my cell phone service with AT&T unless you do something about your service and do it quickly.

  3. barry battles

    12/09/2014 at 9:46 am

    HI my name is Barry Battles I am a new cell phone customers i have no service in my home. I need a free mirco cell tower. I broke my leg . I cant get out of my house to used my cell phone. I need one bad.

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