January 11, 2007 10:30 AM PST

AT&T to phase out Cingular brand

AT&T will begin to extinguish the cell brand to imprint its more-than-century-old name firmly across its services.

The story "AT&T to phase out Cingular brand" published January 11, 2007 at 10:30 AM is no longer available on CNET News.

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36 comments

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ok, so
And we're surprised by this, why??????????
Posted by jmiller666 (2 comments )
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ok, so
And we're surprised by this, why??????????
AT&T used some pretty heavy handed leveraging to buy themselves this sweet deal. Was anyone so deluded that they believed they had anything else in mind, except what they did in doing what they've always done?
Posted by jmiller666 (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
If by AT&T you mean SBC
Lets for the sake of this conversation use AT&T-OldCompanyName so we know which division we are talking about.

AT&T - SBC bought AT&T-Bell South which it was partners with to bring us AT&T - cingular wireless. The Buy out of AT&T - Bell South makes sense. This gave the one company 100% control over the sub company.

AT&T - SBC then bough AT&T - AT&T for its long distance and business services. This wasn't to get it cellular service, Maybe the name, but the money they were after was in the big business and government contracts for voice and data services. Maybe some patents as well.

AT&T is now what used to be AT&T - SBC. It is AT&T - SBC leadership at the top. Not the old AT&T - AT&T leadership. AT&T - SBC has been running old AT&T - AT&T customers off the old brand for sometime. The old AT&T - AT&T cellular contracts were sweet. They did not meet well with cingulars. My guess is they wanted to preserve the cingular name as it had more market share than AT&T but... AT&T is a brand like Coke. People just know it on site.
Posted by Central_office_tech (49 comments )
Link Flag
Remind me...
What exactly is the cellular unit of AT&T going to be called?
Posted by jakec (25 comments )
Reply Link Flag
AT&T Is Good Brand Name?
I am sorry - but since the break-up over 30 years name one succesful AT&T project or product. Oh yeah - NONE!

Who in their right mind thinks consumers think AT&T is a quality brand name?

What a waste of money.
Posted by mnbulldog (11 comments )
Reply Link Flag
"but since the break-up over 30 years...
... name one succesful AT&T project or product..."; OK, here is something/one successful project to think about - Think about where "LINUX" came from!
Posted by Commander_Spock (3123 comments )
Link Flag
Absolutely!
AT&T has stood for mediocrity for so long that severla generations think ATT=crap. What a mistake.
Posted by swilner51 (62 comments )
Link Flag
Not so positive name...
I don't think AT&T is a positive name in the minds of many. Cingular has more of a new-technology/young-company sound, unlike AT&T.

BTW, anyone know where their headquarters will be for this massive company? Of course living in Atlanta where BellSouth and Cingular are stationed, intrigues my interest.
Posted by nyte3k (19 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Cingular is a better brand name
AT&T makes me think of an old stogy company from the 60's.

As I recall, AT&T hardware became Lucent then Avaya so I guess screwing up the brand every few years is in their corporate DNA.
Posted by rcrusoe (1305 comments )
Reply Link Flag
They're all terrible
AT&T, Avaya, Cingular, they're all terrible, I've had negative
experience with them all...but of all of them, Cingular is the
absolute worst.
Posted by thomasdosborneii (19 comments )
Link Flag
Moscow Tractor Factory #6
A telco that covers 50% of the land mass of United States can pretty much call itself anything it likes. AT&T is now part of the telco oligarchy that controls this country. It reminds me of the old days of the Soviet Union when Moscow Tractor Factory #6 not only produced tractors but womens' coats as well. Will Gen X refuse to buy Apple's IPhone because it uses the AT&T cellular network? I think not.
Posted by maxwis (141 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Wanna bet?
So far we have heard the prices of the PHONES (described by
some tech reviewers as the most expensive phones on the
market), but what will monopolizing-controlling Cingular charge
for the SERVICE? That could be a killer right there. Also, once
the customers get a load of the most phenomenally worst
service on the face of the planet, then we'll see how it goes. You
made an analogy with the Soviet Union. I think of Cingular (by
whatever name they want to use) were an AIRLINE, it would be
AEROFLOT (which, if that were your only choice, you'd be better
off WALKING!).
Posted by thomasdosborneii (19 comments )
Link Flag
Hopefully, they'll fix Cingular and . . .
I can get an iPhone without all the problems that my family that is on Cingular is having. I have TMobile and they are starting to really bite. So time to move and what better reason.

They need to worry more about Cingular's lack of QoS, low grade customer service, than name recognition.
Posted by SandFarmer (29 comments )
Reply Link Flag
iPhone is not a Network
That iPhone you covet will be exclusive to Cingular.
Posted by swilner51 (62 comments )
Link Flag
iPhone is not a Network
That iPhone you covet will be exclusive to Cingular.
Posted by swilner51 (62 comments )
Link Flag
Nonsense
I am a cingular employee and i have had numerous people come in and complain about the new news. Customers dont want AT&T, They want cingular, thats why they bought it. Besides CDMA or GSM networks, all cell phone companies are pretty much the same. The main key ingredient in wireless services is the name. Cingular is know for the " family" talk bundles. The name, logo and commercials appeal to modern kids, teens, and adults. Farmers cutting crop circles is not going to attract anyone except for our grandparents and doubtful at that. AT&T is know for ******* up, failed projects and changing the name. Sorry AT&T, you may be the hand that feeds me but your a bunch of retards. HOORAAY FOR MONEY HUNGRY COOPERATEs !!!!
Posted by nastyknate (3 comments )
Reply Link Flag
oh yeah and...
ROLLOVER MINUTES. If they phase out the roll over minutes, im toatally crashin my car into someones cooperate office. jk dont sue me.
Posted by nastyknate (3 comments )
Link Flag
Re: nonsense
Actually, I know a good deal of people, including my entire family, who really wanted ATT, but were forced into getting cingular. ATT wireless had GREAT customer service, and the sales rep managed to get us nearly 400 extra minutes per month per phone! Of course, after the buyout of ATT wireless by Cingular, we were forced into switching to a Cingular plan, with much less minutes, and much crappier customer service.

Not that this new development will help any, as its still gonna be the Cingular people in charge under the ATT name...
Posted by yankeefan1087 (2 comments )
Link Flag
You deserve all the pain that comes to you
Your work for this hideous company? If I were you, I wouldn't
say that in public. Thieves, criminals, liars, far far far worse than
the legendarily bad-company MCI. Ken Lay-type prison
sentences and heart attacks are what the whole lot of you
deserve. And don't make me laugh about "rollover minutes".
Cingular comes up with every trick in the book to steal those
away from you, such as deleting MY minutes every month and
saying that I had used them up when I KNOW I had my phone in
a unused drawer with a dead battery that wouldn't recharge. No
tears for the demise of the CIngular name, believe me...the only
good thing is that maybe their spreading cancer will finally kill
off AT&T for good. This entire corporation and everything
involved with it needs to be swept from the earth.
Posted by thomasdosborneii (19 comments )
Link Flag
AT+T then Cingular then AT+T
when AT+T wireless, changed to cingular, i was forced to upgrade my phone because the old AT+T phone was incompatable with cingular, as a long time customer of AT+T, i was expecting a free upgrade, how stupid of me to think this, they said it would be 500 bucks for the cheapest phone, i said nope, i was out of my contract and told them to bugger off

i went to as local store, got 2 free phones, and went to cingular, they had horrible customer service, was lied to around every corner and i was being excessivly billed, the rollover was not going right, you name it

so i stopped my account and called my lawyer, after 2 years of crap, they finally caved and let me out of my contract, now i wonder if the same problems are coming up, i am currently a very happy nextel user and will stay with them
Posted by esperanto_ (16 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Cingular is evil
My experience of with Cingular is similar to yours--the company
is pure evil; they lie and steal at every turn. I got out of them
and into T-Mobile, which was like receiving a pass out of hell
into heaven. I think Apple's linking their iPhone with Cingular
will kill the iPhone, unless their foreign sales (which aren't
chained to Cingular) can sustain it. By the way, I think AT&T is
not a well-loved brand name, either. Or else, why did they lose
out to SBC in the first place?
Posted by thomasdosborneii (19 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Cingular's service is iffy at best!!!
I don't like Cingular's Service. It seems like it went from good when they tookover from att wireless to horrible but they were starting to make things better and put new towers up. Now att is coming back and taking over. Does this mean all new equipment again? Back to TDMA? If so I will go to Alltel or Verizon they both knock the pants off att/Cingular or whoever the Federal government will decide to call them next week.
Posted by MDziatkowicz3 (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Look
What you forget is that wireless service is really only a radio
signal, so saying that any one carrier is any better than another
for service is a statement born of ingorance, especially because
most wireless providers have roaming agreements with each
other where their service areas don't overlap, sometimes even
when they do, and they rarely charge for roaming anymore.
Cingular only has national plans which do not have roaming in
the continental united states, although of course in the gulf
coast you have off shore towers which if you end up roaming on,
you get 3.99 / min charges.

That is not cingular / tmobile / at&t wireless or any other
wireless provider's responsibility to let you know about. Read
your contract, it's actually in there. There is also a clause in your
contract saying you can not sue your wireless provider, you can
request binding arbitration with an arbitrater of their choosing.
So stop threatening to sue, they're laughing at you...

Remember my earlier point about wireless being a radio signal,
well keep that in mind when you're driving 75 mph, wireless is
meant for mobility, but be careful with your mobility. You ARE
going to lose signal sometimes, you ARE going to drop calls. If
you want 100% or ever 90 % reliability, use a land line phone.
Especially if you are a business customer, I know you like the
convenience of a wireless for business, but it always turns into a
huge problems, with needless calls to customer service to
complain about something that will never be fixed.

In summation Wireless = Radio
- therefore it will not always work, in fact you will be lucky to
have it working 80% of the time you need it to work.
- You can't sue so stop threatening
- It really doesn't matter who your provider is, they all go
through phases where they feel customer satisfaction is more
important than numbers, then it switches to numbers are more
important than customer satisfaction. It isn't going away.

Anti Wireless Dude
Posted by anti-wireless-dude (2 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Cingular Stands For Poor Service
Cingular has poor customer satisfaction ratings, with both J.D. Powers and Consumer Reports.

Slapping a different brand name on poor service isn't going to help.

Prospective iPhone customers beware....
Posted by john55440 (1020 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Cingular's J.D. Power Ratings (Links)
With Cingular, you get:

1.) Poor call quality

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.jdpower.com/util/ratings/results.aspx?study_id=512&#38;vertical=Telecom&#38;v1=West" target="_newWindow">http://www.jdpower.com/util/ratings/results.aspx?study_id=512&#38;vertical=Telecom&#38;v1=West</a>

2.) Poor customer care performance

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.jdpower.com/telecom/ratings/wireless/customer_care/index.asp" target="_newWindow">http://www.jdpower.com/telecom/ratings/wireless/customer_care/index.asp</a>

3.) Poor billing satisfaction

4.) Poor overall satisfaction

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.jdpower.com/util/ratings/results.aspx?study_id=553&#38;vertical=Telecom&#38;v2=West" target="_newWindow">http://www.jdpower.com/util/ratings/results.aspx?study_id=553&#38;vertical=Telecom&#38;v2=West</a>

The last time I looked, Cingular was also poorly rated by Consumer Reports.
Posted by john55440 (1020 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Those results are wrong!
Sorry but JD Power and Associates are wrong. I've compared rate plans among Sprint, Verizon, Cingular, and T-Mobile and to get the same service I get with Cingular it would cost me more with every other carrier. Not to mention I travel with the military and I very rarely loose service with Cingular. I've tried Sprint (What a Joke for service) and I loose service anytime I'm away from a major suburb or highway. T-Mobile is just higher priced on their family plans and their phones suck.
Posted by cdtphilpot (569 comments )
Link Flag
Out here in San Diego
EVERYONE I talk to uses Cingular. It really irritates me. All they care about is Rollover. I keep telling people that if they're on a plan to where their usage does not match the plan to the point where they HAVE to roll minutes over, they're getting ripped off on the plan and should just downgrade to a plan that's more suitable. Their reply: "well what if one month I go over that?" And yet they never do. It's really irritating.

When this becomes AT&#38;T I REALLY hope they do away with Rollover. Then there will be nothing left to appeal to customers.
Posted by ReVeLaTeD (755 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I hate AT&T, they should stay Cingular!
I've had Cingular for 6 years now with very few problems. I travel a lot and haven't had many dropped calls and always have pretty good customer service, especially compared to Voice Stream. AT&#38;T is just crap. They had horrible land line service when we had them and they are going to loose brand recognition among the younger kids.
Posted by cdtphilpot (569 comments )
Reply Link Flag
AT&T-Cingular
Ever since AT&#38;T did their thing the service from Cingular ha gone from good to very bad. Just goes to show what happens when BIG money does it's thing.
Posted by nrowe46 (2 comments )
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