Survey says 34% won't buy the iPhone 3GS because of AT&T

According to Gearlog, PriceGrabber, which operates a price-comparison site for online shopping, conducted a poll of 2,411 respondents between June 12 and July 10, asking them about why those consumers have chosen to wait to buy the iPhone 3GS. About a third of those who responded said they won't buy an iPhone 3GS because of AT&T. AT&T has been criticized for dropped calls and spotty coverage. We've previously reported that AT&T has also been lagging in iPhone feature deployment. They have also been criticized for its iPhone upgrade policy, which they later revised.

Despite all of this, AT&T sold out of iPhone 3GS launch day pre-orders, and on launch day, it was AT&T's best ever sales. The iPhone has also contributed to another record quarter for Apple, and in a conference call, Apple said that the supply of the iPhone 3GS is constrained.

Below is the survey conducted by PriceGrabber and the responses:

When, if at all, are you planning to purchase the new Apple iPhone 3GS available in US stores on June 19, 2009?

80.84% I am not planning to purchase the Apple iPhone 3GS
13.73% I plan to purchase the iPhone 3GS sometime in the next 12 months
1.66% As soon as it is available

Why are you WAITING to purchase the Apple iPhone 3GS? (Select all that apply)

60.60% I am waiting for the price to come down
44.64% I want to be sure there are no iPhone 3GS hardware problems
29.93% I want to be sure there are no 3.0 software problems
21.95% I do not want to deal with the crowds at the stores

Why are you NOT purchasing the iPhone 3GS? (Select all that apply)

53.45% I am satisfied with the phone I currently own
34.32% I do not want to switch to the AT&T service provider
31.47% It is still too expensive
19.49% I am not interested in the features or applications
12.80% If other reason, please specify here:

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I've had T-mobile, AT&T and now Verizon, and I must say that Verizon is the best service out of all of them, i have a 100 plan with 4 lines on it and 1400 mins, and 1000 txt between 2 phones, and I never go over my mins or txts because all the people i talk to have verizon, so its free for them, and the people i talk to that don't have them don't ever reach my limit. It just sucks that they have a crappy firmware restriction. I would definitely buy an Iphone if it came to verizon, because that would be the best phone ever made.

The great advantage of BlackBerry, WinMobile, and (eventually) Android is that you don't have to worry about being tied down to one carrier. You can find those kinds of phones on any network.

Im an AT&T, have been since Cingular, and Bellsouth prior. So I got history here. Never have I had any issues with disco's. Always been solid. I've traveled from Miami to NC, and TX, OK and everything in between. No problems. Whereas the rest of my family have jumped all around different providers, Sprint, Verizon, MetroPCS ect... regretfully.

I've been off a contract for years now, and I didn't hesitate to jump back into another one when the 3GS was released. All comes down to geographic so pretty pointless to argue. Only thing one could debate is prices.

I switched from Verizon to ATT last month when I got my 3gs, no issues yet and I've actually been traveling lately so I gave it a good workout. I'm sure it's not the case everywhere, but in my area I'll put ATT toe-to-toe with any carrier and they compare favorably. I find their service more friendly and more interested in keeping me happy than Verizon, who tend to ignore long time customers and crap up their phones with that god awful red theme and useless software.

I just switched to AT&T 5-6 weeks ago and I cannot say I am surprised to see this article.

I have been with Verizon for roughly 6-7 years. I have 4 lines of service for myself, my wife, my mother and I keep an extra PDA due to being on the road since I cannot be talking on the phone and connected to the internet simultaneously with Verizon. Customer service has been overall pretty good. I have had the occasional rep that just wants to be a b!tch and I simply hang up, call back and get someone else. Verizon does not have the best (AKA: Coolest) phones and hate their software. The Blackberry storm which I recently through from a window SUCKS!!!! As did the iPhone during its first 6-12 months from what I have read and heard. If you are going to be an early adopter, then you pay the price. AND YES, Verizon can be the most expensive network.

I have been jealous for a long time of iPhone users and tried to fight the temptation of switching until the day the 3GS was launched. I found a store that had 1 of 3 left and I snagged it for just my line with Verizon. WOW, truly an amazing phone, a little too locked down for a techie like me, but its stable, fast, has lots of cool features and so on. Better than any Verizon phone I have used.

But here is my problem that is causing me to start regretting my decision. As an experience Verizon user I am not custom to high levels of dropped calls and I have had more dropped calls and failed calls in the past 5-6 weeks with this iPhone than I can remember in the past year with my Verizon phone(s). Keep in mind I do live in Phoenix, AZ and I understand that smaller cities may have more dropped calls than I would. I have found that I cannot depend on my iPhone when joining conference calls for work (dropped calls), entering large buildings and getting on elevators, etc. (with a person talking on their Verizon phone standing next to me with no problems). Hell, driving from Phoenix to Las Vegas this past weekend showed me just how bad it was, my Pandora Radio app was worthless because the iPhone could not keep service for 80 percent of the drive. With my Verizon phone, it may have lost service once or twice for 3-5 seconds until it found another tower going to Vegas. And for a lot of iPhone apps being very internet dependent....ummmm....

My point is....Should I have just got an iTouch with 802.11x? Because from what a new AT&T customer can see so far, their network is useless for those of us who don't stand in one place all year long. I travel between Arizona, California, Texas, Nevada a lot and something tells me that my iPhone may prove to be a bad decision due to the network provider Apple chose to use.

I called AT&T and you know that they told me.......Per my contract...service is not guaranteed in buildings or vehicles. So as long as I am standing outside in the blazing 115 degree sun, my iPhone is great.

From what I can conclude from my experience so far.....If you live in a large city with solid AT&T 3G service and you don't travel much and you don't find yourself in large buildings, elevators, or need to join important phone calls for your JOB, etc....then go with the cool iPhone....But if those things mentioned above are important to you, then get a less cool, crappy Verizon software and somewhat more expensive provider, phone.....that you KNOW will work wherever you are and not drop calls every 10-20 steps you take. And yes, I expect this opinion of mine will be attacked, but I am just sharing my experience as a new AT&T customer.

I was going to get my wife an iPhone yesterday, but just couldn't bring myself to do it. With my kids with her all day out running errands or coming to visit me out of town and if something were to go wrong and she needed to dial 911 or whatever.....YOU MUST BE OUT OF YOUR MIND IF YOU THINK I WOULD TRUST AT&T!!!!! HELP!!! THERE IS A CRAZY PERSON TRYING TO BREAK I.......CALLED FAILED, NO SERVICE! BUT DAMN, THAT'S A COOL PHONE YOU HAVE THERE.......

Luckily 911 calls are relayed over the first open tower regardless of network providor (as long as the signal is compatible with your phone)...

I haven't had the iPhone and am a Sprint user, but I agree dropped calls would drive me insane.

I am not a RF engineer or anything, but after some late night research I did discover what I believe is the reason AT&T and most other GSM providers “In the U.S.A” have so many problems with service. And it really has nothing to do with the companies themselves, but actually is the fault of our good old Uncle Sam government. Turns out that CDMA providers are able to transmit their signals are far higher power levels because the band CDMA uses is of slightly higher quality and is far from government and U.S. consumer product bands. The government and most of North America actually caps GSM bands at 1/3 the power level of CDMA to avoid GSM technology from “walking” on household wireless devices (baby monitors, radio, wireless, etc). This obviously making it impossible for GSM to travel far distances, penetrate thick walls, mountains/hills and other obstacles. GSM providers are forced to place more towers far closer together to cover the same area a single CDMA tower can achieve. And, GSM providers actually need to place tower repeater on large customer building or the service will not work (and those repeaters are not cheap).

I had a client I was consulting for that moved from Sprint to AT&T a few years back. The problem is that none of the phones would work when you were in the building (no service). The client threatened to cancel the 20K per month contract if AT&T didn̢۪t fix the problems. AT&T tried to charge the client some 50K to put a cell tower on top of the building, but the client laughed. AT&T did install the tower, as long as the customer provided the voice DS1 circuit.

My point isâ€Â¦..Didn’t Apple know of these problems when they were identifying who the provider would be for their iPhone. ORâ€Â¦..Are the rumors true that AT&T agreed to offer no real discounts for Apple hardware, increase the term of the contracts for the sole purpose that AT&T gives Apple 15 percent of each customer’s monthly service charges for the life of the customer’s account? I am not one for conspiracies, but if I were Steve Jobs and I knew I had a product that people would want regardless of how bad the network provider wasâ€Â¦.but I would get 15 percent payments in-addition to the profit of the iPhone sale for years to comeâ€Â¦Ã¢€Â¦.Ya, I might turn a blind to customer complaints regarding AT&Tâ€Â¦Ã¢€Â¦.Maybe that’s why Verizon said no when they were offered the iPhone.

Poor you U.S consumers...!!!
Orange here in France had the same kind of exclusivity on Iphone; not after they have been sued by SFR and Bouygues Telecom........Now you can choose your type of contract and provider.......Nice isn't it.
I just bought mine a week ago,kind of disapointed because there is not that much of improvement between Iphone 3G and 3GS but whatever,I got it.....coool

armanderli said,
Poor you U.S consumers...!!!
Orange here in France had the same kind of exclusivity on Iphone; not after they have been sued by SFR and Bouygues Telecom........Now you can choose your type of contract and provider.......Nice isn't it.
I just bought mine a week ago,kind of disapointed because there is not that much of improvement between Iphone 3G and 3GS but whatever,I got it.....coool


The problem is that here in the US att is really the only provider the phone can be used on unless you dont mind not having 3g (tmobiles 3g is different).

I don't really understand where this information is coming from. I've been on AT&T wireless service since before it was ATT&T (it was Singular prior to the AT&T era). I've never had spotty coverage or a dropped call. And I use my cell phone for everything (I don't have a land line).

Cingular ;)

Coverage varies by location so you might get a perfect experience and someone 5 blocks away or a city or state away may get another one.

I have an iPhone 3G on Orange (UK) and whenever I ring up, they get all funny when I say I'm using an iPhone. Almost as if it's somehow impossible. Now I just tell them I'm using an "alternative handset" to the one they have on my account

I'm part of the percentage that doesn't want to deal with ANY of the cellular phone companies.

You pay for receiving a call? That's already b.s....

thornz0 said,
I'd love an iphone but having been an AT&T (Cingular) customer, I'll never go back.


I agree I had AT&T and had all kinds of trouble with their service a couple of years ago before I switched providers and maybe now AT&T's service is much better but all the memories of the problems I had are still fresh in my mind so that not even the lure of a shiny new iPhone will make me switch back to AT&T

Well.. with as many people that bought the 3GS already wouldn't the people who haven't be more likely to not get it generally? This is kind of how it was with the console wars, saying how PS3 or Wii was catching up to the XBox in monthly sales, yet so many people already had a XBox.. it's very unlikely someone with 1 is going to keep buying them..

itsthenewDC said,
Well.. with as many people that bought the 3GS already wouldn't the people who haven't be more likely to not get it generally? This is kind of how it was with the console wars, saying how PS3 or Wii was catching up to the XBox in monthly sales, yet so many people already had a XBox.. it's very unlikely someone with 1 is going to keep buying them..

Uhh, afaik, the Wii was never catching up with the XBOX in monthly sales? It's almost always been outselling it month for month :P

my parents have had some trouble with ATT. basically they returned a phone to ATT, ATT then lost it, said we never sent it to them. Long story short, ATT wanted my parents to pay for the phone, so they dropped ATT.

everyone I know uses tmobile, I get no service at my house though. all the phone companies suck. i bought my iphone on ebay, unlocked it my self and use pre-paid minutes from t-mobile.

Same here. I am not getting iPhone due to contractual obligation with AT&T.
Dropped calls, bad coverage, half-assed contracts, etc.

Euphoria said,
Same here. I am not getting iPhone due to contractual obligation with AT&T.
Dropped calls, bad coverage, half-assed contracts, etc.

Which sounds exactly like Verizon, who I just left.

I handle wireless communications for my employer and we are an AT&T corporate client. The biggest problem is the inability of the network to handle all the data. When the iPhone first came out, all our other smartphones on Windows & Blackberry started acting up because they could not maintain their 3G connections, they would switch between roaming, Edge & 3G constantly. This finally got fixed over the last year. Now as soon as the 3GS came out, the same issues have reappeared. They really need to upgrade but I guess the main philosophy is to get consumers first and then upgrade the network - I'm sure other wireless networks do the same. They just don't have the iPhone traffic to deal with right now.

reverseswing said,
I handle wireless communications for my employer and we are an AT&T corporate client. The biggest problem is the inability of the network to handle all the data. When the iPhone first came out, all our other smartphones on Windows & Blackberry started acting up because they could not maintain their 3G connections, they would switch between roaming, Edge & 3G constantly. This finally got fixed over the last year. Now as soon as the 3GS came out, the same issues have reappeared. They really need to upgrade but I guess the main philosophy is to get consumers first and then upgrade the network - I'm sure other wireless networks do the same. They just don't have the iPhone traffic to deal with right now.


I would bet if you took 30 million users and put them all on verizon wirelesses network all at once it would do the same thing.

I'm an AT&T Mobility employee. I can tell you that as an employee in the switch all I do all day long lately is add more capacity to the 3G network.

@ spawn -- that's what I mean, you're adding capacity now - it'll take a few months to get to the point where AT&T has enough capacity to handle the new load without affecting existing customers.

I'd probably own the iPhone if it weren't on AT&T, due to previous experience with that terrible company. Here are some of the issues I've had with it:

1. I was on AT&T for 4 years, when I called because I wanted to upgrade my phone and sign another 2 year contract. However, there was a blatant incorrect charge on my bill (valued around $5) that I wanted removed. They refused. I told them that the call went from me wanting to extend my service and purchase a phone (valued at least $2500) to cancelling their service. After speaking with their manager, they agreed to cancel my service.

2. My friend gave me an AT&T branded phone with 3G that was incompatible with my t-mobile service, so I called AT&T to get service. After signing up, they got it wrong. Not only were they confused about what coverage worked with my phone, they quoted me exhorbant prices for their service (unlimited data clocks in at ... $60/month?), and on top of it all - they even got it wrong! Blatant bait and switch tactics. This was from the mouth of a supervisor.

I filed a Better Business Bureau complaint, got a call from someone else who wanted to make it right - but it was too late, you know? How can I give business to a company run like this, where every time I need to do talk to customer service I need to file a BBB complaint to get them to actually listen to me?

axebox said,
I'd probably own the iPhone if it weren't on AT&T, due to previous experience with that terrible company. Here are some of the issues I've had with it:

1. I was on AT&T for 4 years, when I called because I wanted to upgrade my phone and sign another 2 year contract. However, there was a blatant incorrect charge on my bill (valued around $5) that I wanted removed. They refused. I told them that the call went from me wanting to extend my service and purchase a phone (valued at least $2500) to cancelling their service. After speaking with their manager, they agreed to cancel my service.

2. My friend gave me an AT&T branded phone with 3G that was incompatible with my t-mobile service, so I called AT&T to get service. After signing up, they got it wrong. Not only were they confused about what coverage worked with my phone, they quoted me exhorbant prices for their service (unlimited data clocks in at ... $60/month?), and on top of it all - they even got it wrong! Blatant bait and switch tactics. This was from the mouth of a supervisor.

I filed a Better Business Bureau complaint, got a call from someone else who wanted to make it right - but it was too late, you know? How can I give business to a company run like this, where every time I need to do talk to customer service I need to file a BBB complaint to get them to actually listen to me?


I am wondering if you are making this up. Unlimited data for all smartphones is $30 and its even less then that for regular cell phones.

majortom1981 said,


I am wondering if you are making this up. Unlimited data for all smartphones is $30 and its even less then that for regular cell phones.


I am as honest as I could be without going into lengths of great detail.

Give me a break. You want to purchase $2500 phone and complain about $5 charge?

You better take a few more classes at your high school on proof reading what you type before posting.

Andrey said,
Give me a break. You want to purchase $2500 phone and complain about $5 charge?

You better take a few more classes at your high school on proof reading what you type before posting.


You miss the point. He's bringing $2500 of cell phone and contract to the table, asking only that the company remove the "blatant incorrect charge" from his bill. The company refuses, so why would he stay with them if they will fight him over $5? I would take my business elsewhere, too. It's the principle.

majortom1981 said,
I am wondering if you are making this up. Unlimited data for all smartphones is $30 and its even less then that for regular cell phones.


He never put a date on his two events. The data plans used to be $60 and they may have changed in price. Prices change, history does not :P

I'm part of that 34.32%.

The concept of being stuck with one service provider makes as much sense as a car that can only accept fuel from one brand of gas station...it doesn't.

Hating the phone and/or service provider, the consumer should be able to switch one or both at will and not have to be stuck with limited options. Both should be interchangeable.

That anology doesn't quite make sense. Cars and phones can hardly be related. I agree that the iPhone being locked on to one provider has its downsides, but bare in mind it also allows Apple to maintain qaulity of user experience as much as possible (though why they chose AT&T I do not know).

I don't do it then. I'm stuck just like everyone else.

The entire idea though, that I would have to leave my current provider to join one I am not familiar with just to get a phone makes no sense.

Make us a phone that ANY provider can offer.

Brendando said,
That anology doesn't quite make sense. Cars and phones can hardly be related. I agree that the iPhone being locked on to one provider has its downsides, but bare in mind it also allows Apple to maintain qaulity of user experience as much as possible (though why they chose AT&T I do not know).

You can see the link below to a Neowin article that explained why Verizon said no Apple.

http://www.neowin.net/news/main/07/01/29/v...e-two-years-ago


---------------
It also says Apple wanted complete control over how the phone was made and looked. I'm sure Verizon would still say no to Apple if the phone was CDMA anyway. They always love to put bloatware on their phones.

Electric Bolt said,
You can see the link below to a Neowin article that explained why Verizon said no Apple.

http://www.neowin.net/news/main/07/01/29/v...e-two-years-ago


---------------
It also says Apple wanted complete control over how the phone was made and looked. I'm sure Verizon would still say no to Apple if the phone was CDMA anyway. They always love to put bloatware on their phones. :)


Depends on what pone you got I guess. On my Storm I deleted all the Verizon bundled stuff on there. Verizon I don't think has a lot to say about what has to be on the Storm if it can be easilly deleted (though they did put their VMusic crap on without asking, its gone now).

I was glad to get the BB and get away from Verizon's locked down dumbphones, they are really annoying.

Brendando said,
also allows Apple to maintain qaulity of user experience as much as possible (though why they chose AT&T I do not know).
I do not think so; abroad iPhones are sold Dim free and you can use your provider of choice. I use the iPhone in Italy and believe the quality of the service is way better than here.

Brendando said,
but bare in mind it also allows Apple to maintain qaulity of user experience as much as possible (though why they chose AT&T I do not know).
Apple can't guarantee anything regarding the service quality but, only put their hands in the plans and such. They have no influence on call quality, network uptime or anything.

For what it's worth in Australia here the iPhone is available on five carriers (over four networks) and can be bought outright also. Theres no reason this can't be done elsewhere either.

+1. Also around my area, AT&T has had a bad rep for customer service and such. My dad won't touch them because of bad things he has heard and I think he was with them at one point as well. We're with Verizon and get great service. I got the enV Touch so I wouldn't have to pay for the data plan (almost all smart phones/PDAs require the data plan which is most touch screen/feature complete phones nowadays).

The things I don't like about Verizon is the fact that up til this point, they haven't allowed wifi (so they could make $ from you surfing on their bandwidth is my guess). Also the choices of phones aren't as great as I'd like them to be, and because they use CDMA instead of GSM.

But since those things aren't crucial to me and I get good service + have a great phone that doesn't require a data plan, I'm satisfied.

this survey is very inconsistent.. a bunch of bs.. im sure alot of verizon fanboys behind this. face it.. verizon sucks! and from what i've been reading.. AT&T and iPhone are here to stay..so deal with it!..

Why do you say Verizon sucks?

I have T-Mobile and I can say that sucks, but I can't wait till my contract is over to switch to verizon! Seems like they have best service (at least in the US).

dimithrak said,
this survey is very inconsistent.. a bunch of bs.. im sure alot of verizon fanboys behind this. face it.. verizon sucks! and from what i've been reading.. AT&T and iPhone are here to stay..so deal with it!..

He's right, more than 34% of people know that AT&T's service sucks. No matter what you say Verizon will have a larger network than AT&T and more people to call for free!

Verizon sucks because they put crapware all over the phones. I have Verizon FIOS and for god sakes the entire router's firmware has been bloated with Verizon logos and terrible loading screens. They have the worst customer service and I had to wait the entire last summer to get the service because they didn't have enough installers to install it. Plus, the phones are all ugly and use CDMA. I like having freedom of what phone I can use, and sometimes I swap my sim card with my old phone to use it on occasions, you can't do anything close to that on a CDMA based phone which includes Verizon. At least AT&T can understand Apple and how they don't want Verizon written all over the phone, the iPhone is free of service provider branding, it's all Apple.

AT&T might not have the best 3G network quality or the best call quality and they might not even have a reasonable price, but they do have good phones that use GSM and are more professional and don't have AT&T written all over it. They also bloat up their phones too, but they don't make it as bloated as Verizon do, and the best phones don't come bloated, only slider phones and flip phones are on the bloated side.

The call quality all depends on where you are. AT&T works better in some areas and Verizon in others, as someone who has one of each I see that first hand when I travel. I am not a fan of the Verizon way of doing things, they get too involved with the way the phone works, they are a service provider, not a manufacture. I'm not saying I love AT&T either; I think that with the exception of broadband cards their 3G network was a step in the wrong direction, but at least for the most part their phones work the way they were designed to.

What I wish was that phones where so independent from the service provider that you could buy whatever phone you wanted off Amazon (I guess you would have to make sure you knew if you wanted CDMA or GSM) and then order service from whatever provider you wanted to. Don't see that happening anytime soon.

Nightwind Hawk said,
Why do you say Verizon sucks?

I have T-Mobile and I can say that sucks, but I can't wait till my contract is over to switch to verizon! Seems like they have best service (at least in the US).


I've had my business phone thru Verizon for 3 years and they have been absolutely the best. Quality of service is all I care about. I've tried ATT, Sprint, and T-Mobile and I get better quality service from Verizon, by far, and I travel a LOT. My personal cell carrier is Sprint (7 years) and if I didn't have a full data plan for $25 I'd be with Verizon.

TCLN Ryster said,
Just as I'm sure AT&T fanboys are behind your post.

aww.. did i hurt your feelings? My point being, they are backward in tech. Get on the GSM Wagon. The whole world does it. Other, the only reason they have a large network is cause they acquired alltel.

I know many people who suffer with the Verizon not having reception. Many people who switch from Verizon to At&t. I sometimes wonder, if the iPhone were on Verizon, what people will say about it.. wonder how may whiny people would pop up about the service..

too bad you're probably apart of that set of ppl...

Night Prowler said,


I've had my business phone thru Verizon for 3 years and they have been absolutely the best. Quality of service is all I care about. I've tried ATT, Sprint, and T-Mobile and I get better quality service from Verizon, by far, and I travel a LOT. My personal cell carrier is Sprint (7 years) and if I didn't have a full data plan for $25 I'd be with Verizon.


Their customer service gives you the run around, especially when you pull out the contract and explain to them why something should be happening and its not. They make things up, lie, and pull out hidden/unknown contractual obligations. We'd tried canceling our contract because a cell tower in the area took damage, and months later I still couldn't get signal. It took another 2 months of run around until they canceled the contract (and the cell phone tower to this day isn't back to normal capacity)

Customer service is the black mark on Verizion, and one of the reasons I hope I never have to use them agian.

Brendando said,
Not surpised.

+1

I'm not getting it until/if it comes on Verizon OR their service magically becomes better when I renew with Verizon next year.