New AT&T phone contracts dive in 1Q

“AT&T Inc. used to draw in subscribers by the millions with the lure of the iPhone. Now, it’s mostly selling iPhones to its own customers, who are trading up from other AT&T phones,” Peter Svensson reports for The Associated Press.

“The drop in recruitment from other carriers was made clear Wednesday as AT&T said it added just 62,000 net new subscribers on contract-based plans in the first quarter, a record low,” Svensson reports. “In many previous quarters, the number was above a million.”

Svensson reports, “The difference is that Verizon Wireless started selling the iPhone on Feb. 10, ending three and half years of exclusivity for AT&T.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “sperryj” for the heads up.]


  1. I’m dumping AT&T for Verizon as soon as our contracts are up in July. We have lousy coverage and AT&T will sell me a 3G Micro tower for $150 but could care less about customer satisfaction or support. The next call I make to AT&T will be to cancel.

    1. I read if you complain about the microcell cost, they will eventually give it to you free.

      I’m the opposite here, Verizon has crap for coverage. AT&T has the best.
      I’m never below 3 bars, unless i’m at work… so damn much metal in our building no cell phone gets decent coverage inside, walk outside and it jumps to 5 bars instantly. (verizon/AT&T/Sprint, it doesnt matter)
      65 miles down the freeway where i spend most of my weekends during the summer… there is AT&T coverage. and thats it.. Sprint/Verizon are non existent.

  2. @FTB – I tried my best with AT&T but I guess I was not persuasive enough. Also have a significant dead spot on the road I take daily with AT&T but didn’t have when I was a Verizon user. May wait for iPhone 5 to come along.

    1. Definitely. That would keep me from switching to AT&T. I have them now and am grandfathered in but thinking about switching cuz I want the tethering feature for my iPad 2. Can’t get unless I lose my unlimited data plan. BS. Been with them for 7 years.

  3. I’m going to have that decision to make when my AT&T contract is up in September. The 3G speed of Verizon is the only thing that is making me hesitate switching.

  4. I agree with FTB and Eric The Red.
    I get 5 bars outside and 4to5 bars
    inside all the places I hang around
    in Grosse Pointe Park, Mich. 🙂
    AT&T’s data plan is truly crappy. 🙁

    1. The seemingly conflicting stories don’t actually conflict. One story is talking about ALL activations, while this story is about NEW activations.

      Overall iPhone activations are up significantly from last year (presumably because of iPhone 4 upgraders), but new activations are way, way down because new iPhone customers are going to VZW instead.

      So, the takeaways are:
      A) AT&T isn’t losing customers like some predicated and, are actually retaining a lot of customers (good for ATT)
      B) ATT isn’t adding new customers (growing) like they were, i.e. growth is WAY down (bad for ATT)

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