“Since the launch of the iPhone 3GS, public perception of AT&T has progressively decreased, while opinions about competitor Verizon Wireless remained relatively unchanged, a new study shows,” Neil Hughes reports for AppleInsider.
MacDailyNews Take: For the umpteenth time: Take those 10+ million U.S. iPhones off AT&T and plop them on Verizon and watch AT&T satisfaction soar (especially in metro areas) and Verizon come to a grinding halt. No carrier, including Verizon’s, is ready for 10+ million devices that are actually used for serious data consumption. Verizon’s network accommodates inferior devices that only sip data in comparison to iPhone due to their unusable web browsers (if they even have them) and generally indecipherable user interfaces which, only benefits the carrier as they get to sell phones on features that most people will never use. The iPhone’s ease-of-use (snap a photo or even shoot a video and send it over AT&T’s network to wherever; robust, real Web Browsing; data-consuming apps which include streaming video over 3G, etc.) combined with the vast, rapidly-growing number of iPhones would cripple any carrier. If AT&T can’t get a handle on it, Apple would do well to reconsider their exclusive U.S. arrangement and spread the wealth – and the data consumption – to other carriers, as soon as (technically and legally) possible.
Hughes continues, “In a daily survey of 5,000 people 18 and older, YouGov’s BrandIndex tracks companies based on factors of quality, value, satisfaction, recommendation, reputation and impression. When combining those categories, AT&T’s index score of 18.3 on June 16 had eroded to a 14.6 on Thursday… [YouGov’s senior vice president Ted Marzilli] “suggests the issue can be traced to the launch of the iPhone 3GS — or, more specifically, the network’s inability to meet the bandwidth needs of users with the device.”
“While the study found AT&T’s score to consistently drop over the last three months, Verizon has stayed much the same as it was in January,” Hughes reports. “Its Sept. 10 score was 21.2. Scores can range from 100 to -100. A score of zero would mean equal positive and negative feedback.”
More info in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: No wireless network was ready for Apple’s revolution which brought 10+ million of devices that actually use copious amounts of data coming online within a few short years. Of course, AT&T is struggling with it. Any network would. Especially in the U.S. where the land mass is huge and the terrain varied. Suffice to say, it’s much easier to properly cover Belgium*, for just one example (hold the emails, we love Belgium, send beer instead!), than the entire United States of America. AT&T is somewhat unfairly paying the price in perception when any wireless carriers’ network would show similar strains. As usual, Apple is pushing forward, disrupting the status quo. It’s not pretty, for AT&T especially, but Apple has caused a paradigm shift in mobile computing and more rapid mobile network improvements will come from it.
All that said, the market will take care of this by either forcing overwhelmed AT&T to keep the pedal to the metal and press even harder if they want to keep U.S. iPhone exclusivity or, if AT&T’s can’t or won’t rapidly improve their network capacity/coverage, causing Apple to pursue a non-exclusive U.S. carrier strategy lest iPhone sales and brand perception begin to suffer.
* Belgium is about about the size of the state of Maryland.
[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Lynn W.” for the heads up.]