AT&T sent text messages to its customers on Thursday offering 1,000 free rollover minutes. The message specifically said: “There’s no cost or obligation to you. It’s our way of saying thank you. To have your minutes added, reply “YES,” by 9/7/2011.” We received the SMS on an iPhone in the office and confirmed that we did indeed receive 1,000 free rollover minutes. An AT&T spokesperson did not immediately responded to a request for further details on why AT&T issued the offer.
A firm called Lodsys has been targeting Apple and Android developers that it believes are using its in-app purchase technology illegally. Despite Apple’s efforts to argue that its developers are covered under the same license, Lodsys doesn’t appear to be letting up anytime soon — it’s giving developers 21 days to cough up licensing fees before it files lawsuits. In a few recent blog posts, Lodsys explained its position on the matter:
[Apple's] letter was very surprising as Apple and Lodsys were in confidential discussions and there was clearly disagreement on the interpretation of the license terms of Apple’s agreement. Before, during and after these interactions, Lodsys has carefully considered this issue and consulted several legal experts to consider Apple’s claims. We stand firm and restate our previous position that it is the 3rd party Developers that are responsible for the infringement of Lodsys’ patents and they are responsible for securing the rights for their applications. Developers relying on Apple’s letter do so to their own detriment and are strongly urged to review Apple’s own developer agreements to determine the true extent of Apple’s responsibilities to them.
Lodsys is so confident that it has the upper hand in this legal battle that it’s offering developers $1,000 if courts rule that Apple’s license does, in fact, cover them. According to MacRumors, the developers currently being targeted include Combay, Iconfactory, Illusion Labs, Machael G. Karr, Quickoffice, Richard Shinderman, and Wulven Games. Google has yet to respond to Lodsys’ complaints against Android developers. More →
Broke? Think your iPhone is faster than Usain Bolt? T-Mobile’s so confident that the Samsung Galaxy S 4G is quicker than the iPhone that it’s offering $1,000 to anyone who can walk into one of its ten Seattle stores and prove otherwise. Your iPhone just has to win in two out of three throughput speed tests — using an app provided by T-Mobile – and you’ll walk away a cool $1,000 richer. The Galaxy S 4G is sure to be some stiff competition, though. After all, it does pack HSPA+ with support for T-Mobile’s 21Mbps network. The offer is from Friday, April 29th until Sunday, May 1st. Hit the jump for more information from T-Mobile, including a list of participating locations. More →
According to a report filed by GearLive, AT&T is preparing to update its text messaging offerings with the changes taking effect next week. The changes themselves are pretty straight forward. In a two for one swap, Ma’ Bell will be discontinuing its $5 per month, 200 message and $15 per month, 1,500 message plans replacing them with a $10 per month 1,000 message offering. The $20 per month, unlimited messaging plan will be left untouched. Those who currently subscribe to one of plans being discontinued will be allowed to keep the feature until their next change of service. What do you think? Is this move going to save or cost you money? More →
Regional wireless provider U.S. Cellular has announced three new prepaid calling plans just in time for the holiday buying season. The new plans, which all include unlimited text messaging, will offer 200, 400, or 1000 talk minutes and retail for $29, $39, and $49 respectively; the 400 minute plan will also include 5GB of monthly data usage.
“With balancing the budget on the minds of many, prepaid plans can help customers stay on top of spending and don’t require a contractual agreement,” quips the press release. “U.S. Cellular’s new prepaid plans offer spending flexibility through unlimited messaging choices and graduated levels of included voice minutes.”
HP recently launched the Mini 1000 and now it has added integrated WWAN as an option during checkout. Users can select between an EV-DO modem for Verizon Wireless or an HSPA modem for AT&T. The integrated WWAN option will cost you an additional $199 for the modem and another $50 for 1GB RAM and a 60GB hard drive which are requirements for purchasing the integrated modem. All these extras bring the total cost of a 3G enabled Mini 1000 to a whopping $650. This is in stark contrast to the Dell Mini 9, which offers an AT&T subsidized 3g option that drives up the cost of the netbook by a mere $5 when you sign up for an AT&T data plan. If you just can’t resist the Mini 1000 and want integrated 3G without the additional cost, you can always crack open the case and install your own 3G card. Unfortunately, HP has locked the Bios so you can’t just pop in a card and have it work. You need to do some fancy hacking to get around the Bios lock but it reportedly is possible.