FCC to Probe Into Exclusive Wireless Contracts

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theuncalledforone

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I have one questions, what's the difference between this and the NFL/DirecTV contract? I only have one choice if I want to get the NFL Package?

Does this mean that after this probe is done, they'll probe that as well? Or are the lobbyist pushing the senate not concerned with that?
 

Hanin33

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while some would argue that a cellular phone is a necessity, i would find it a huge stretch to believe anyone would consider 'american football' as a necessity.

if these proceedings and the unbundling of exclusive fone contracts helps to bring down the insane prices we pay for basic services, then i'm all for it. this still won't fix the problem of having providers with totally different network architectures and the possibility of higher phone costs because of the integration of separate radios for each network available in the USA.
 

chripuck

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[citation][nom]Hanin33[/nom]while some would argue that a cellular phone is a necessity, i would find it a huge stretch to believe anyone would consider 'american football' as a necessity.if these proceedings and the unbundling of exclusive fone contracts helps to bring down the insane prices we pay for basic services, then i'm all for it. this still won't fix the problem of having providers with totally different network architectures and the possibility of higher phone costs because of the integration of separate radios for each network available in the USA.[/citation]

I'm still curious how anybody thinks this is going to drop prices anywhere? So Apple would have footed the bill themselves. By doing so the iPhone would be available on all networks. That being said, AT&T wouldn't be getting as many new contracts from the iPhone so they would be disinclined to reduce prices.

Somebody please, in detail, explain to me how this is going to do anything other than let all the Verizon/Sprint people have an iPhone without cracking it?
 

chripuck

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And let me add to my previous comment:

Don't come back with the "well they don't have as many contracts so they'll have to lower their prices... competition man!" I say this because it doesn't pertain to any of their other phones that are cross platform.

If we're going this far then I want Taco Bell to carry Coke because damnit I want it.
 

chripuck

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[citation][nom]Hanin33[/nom]while some would argue that a cellular phone is a necessity, i would find it a huge stretch to believe anyone would consider 'american football' as a necessity.if these proceedings and the unbundling of exclusive fone contracts helps to bring down the insane prices we pay for basic services, then i'm all for it. this still won't fix the problem of having providers with totally different network architectures and the possibility of higher phone costs because of the integration of separate radios for each network available in the USA.[/citation]

Oh and while I don't disagree about a cell phone being a "neccessity" I dont think a Palm Pre or iPhone are neccessary. You do realize that every major carrier carry's a dozen + phones that **GASP** make phone calls and do so for free. Often times they carry the exact same phone.
 

mtyermom

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This is about more than the iPhone, chripuck. If all carriers had access to all phones, then they would be forced to either lower their prices or offer more/better service to merit the price (since exclusive phones would no longer be a factor in price). I think the price metric right now in wireless/cellular carriers is outrageous. I'm paying out the ass for a 'smartphone plan' for a blackberry device, close to $100/month, and I get shit all for minutes (300).

Eliminating device/network exclusivity would absolutely increase competition and benefit the consumer.
 

hillarymakesmecry

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They should ditch the contracts and make people pay upfront. That, or finance it into their monthly bill AT THE CUSTOMER'S CHOICE. Paying the rate regardless of your phone's status is ridiculous.

Different carrier's use different service. It'd cost a lot more money to design a phone to function on the different networks.

I have no problem with exclusive contracts. That's the way business works. Do I want an iphone on Verizon? Sure, but I don't want the government to go in a get it for me. Apple should do it because that way they'll make more money. At this point in time they're making more b sticking with ATT.
 

fausto

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funny how after all these years cell phone companies still change about the same even though their costs have gone down.

i don't think the cell companies should be in the business of selling phones or giving free phones that you pay for in your pricing.

plus...when the contract is over, they don't drop the price even though the phone cost was built into the contract. they just crooked.


 
G

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To chripuck: Whether YOU deem an iphone or palm pre as a necessity is not the issue. Whether they ARE a necessity is also irrelevant. It is about restrictive business practices that handcuff end users and provide us with no alternatives or analogs. I would hardly say that taco bell serving coke is a restrictive business practice nor is it artificially altering the industry.
What becomes an issue is when for no technical reasons, an Iphone HAS to come with AT&T. That is restrictive. if Apple makes the argument that they do not want to design for verizon because of the inherent network architecture differences, then I would be inclined to agree with them. However the Iphone should be available to other non CDMA networks.
Also it is most likely true that if these collusions between companies dissolved, prices would be more beneficial in the end for the user. The market prices will moderate themselves and with exclusivity not being an issue, there should be better deals with network providers to maintain their customer base.
The fundamental differences is that rather than being FORCED to stay with you carrier because of their collusion with a certain cell phone manufacturer, you will have more freedom to choose a provider based on well.... what services they provide... not what phones they ALLOW you to use.
 

Hanin33

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[citation][nom]Aggsliota[/nom]To chripuck: Whether YOU deem an iphone or palm pre as a necessity is not the issue. Whether they ARE a necessity is also irrelevant. It is about restrictive business practices that handcuff end users and provide us with no alternatives or analogs. I would hardly say that taco bell serving coke is a restrictive business practice nor is it artificially altering the industry. What becomes an issue is when for no technical reasons, an Iphone HAS to come with AT&T. That is restrictive. if Apple makes the argument that they do not want to design for verizon because of the inherent network architecture differences, then I would be inclined to agree with them. However the Iphone should be available to other non CDMA networks. Also it is most likely true that if these collusions between companies dissolved, prices would be more beneficial in the end for the user. The market prices will moderate themselves and with exclusivity not being an issue, there should be better deals with network providers to maintain their customer base. The fundamental differences is that rather than being FORCED to stay with you carrier because of their collusion with a certain cell phone manufacturer, you will have more freedom to choose a provider based on well.... what services they provide... not what phones they ALLOW you to use.[/citation]

then your arguement is really against the issue of differing network architectures.. because that's why you can't get an iphone from 'anyone' else here in the USA. unlocked iphones exist and you can buy them and use them on ATT here in the USA since only ATT and T-Mobile use the radio type that's in the iphone. your premise that removing exclusivity contracts will somehow fix this is not valid. that forcing apple or palm to make their fones with radios for both or all networks available in the USA would raise the price of the device no matter what.
also your arguement that prices would come down because everyone would have the same fones is not sound. just look at apple's PCs. and let's correct a myth... Macs ARE PCs.... PC meaning Personal Computer... and that is exactly wot a macintosh computer is. and now more so since they both x86 based.

*I stress the USA only because the rest of the world generally has GSM or the entire region will be in one or the other and not both.
 

gorehound

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it is good that this practice will be investigated.we the consumers should be able to puyrchase an iphone or another phone and use it with your phone carrier.
competing networks and companies is not cool.....

and they also need to stop ISP's from consumption billing krap.
 

maigo

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I fail to see how this is something the government should be spending money on. A cell phone isn't required by law and you don't have to choose a $700 phone.
Capitalism damnit!
 
G

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Apple owns the iPhone. They paid for the R&D, they paid for the manufacturing, and they paid for the marketing. If they want to restrict sales to a small cell phone network used only by eskimos in the Artic Circle, that is and should be their privilege. I fear for the future of a country that forces people to sell the goods they own against their will. Apple wants to make the most money possible selling the iPhone, and if they think that means contracting exclusivity with AT&T, then so be it. Companies are not in business "for the good of the people", they are in it to sell goods and profit from them. That is Capitalism. I didn't realize FCC was an acronym for Fascist Communications Commission until today.
 

jerreece

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[citation][nom]chripuck[/nom]And let me add to my previous comment:Don't come back with the "well they don't have as many contracts so they'll have to lower their prices... competition man!" I say this because it doesn't pertain to any of their other phones that are cross platform.If we're going this far then I want Taco Bell to carry Coke because damnit I want it.[/citation]


Reality is, by giving every carrier the same products, you create more competition that benefits the end user. Let's say you really like the iPhone. You wouldn't have to buy it from AT&T. You can go to AT&T and Verizon for instance and ask, "Why should I buy my iPhone from you?" They have to get competitive with rate plans, features, and phone prices in order to get you to buy the phone you can FROM THEM and not someone else.

I honestly expect that the FCC will find that these exclusive deals between phone companies and carriers are bad for us. I would expect them to overrule those contracts and require Apple for instance, to give up the iPhone elsewhere.

Frankly, I think it's in Apple's best interests to do so anyhow. AT&T isn't that great anyhow. Imagine the iPhone 3G on Verizon's network. That might make me change my plans to get the latest greatest Blackberry Storm when it comes out September.

So, yet again, there you have it. Now as a Verizon customer, Apple and Blackberry would be competing to sell me my next phone. So now you have network carriers competing for me, and the cell phone manufacturer as well.

Verizon wins for me as a carrier, simply because in my area their network is far superior to their competitors. Apple automatically loses because I simply cannot buy their phone.
 

jerreece

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[citation][nom]Hanin33[/nom]then your arguement is really against the issue of differing network architectures.. because that's why you can't get an iphone from 'anyone' else here in the USA. unlocked iphones exist and you can buy them and use them on ATT here in the USA since only ATT and T-Mobile use the radio type that's in the iphone. your premise that removing exclusivity contracts will somehow fix this is not valid. that forcing apple or palm to make their fones with radios for both or all networks available in the USA would raise the price of the device no matter what.also your arguement that prices would come down because everyone would have the same fones is not sound. just look at apple's PCs. and let's correct a myth... Macs ARE PCs.... PC meaning Personal Computer... and that is exactly wot a macintosh computer is. and now more so since they both x86 based.*I stress the USA only because the rest of the world generally has GSM or the entire region will be in one or the other and not both.[/citation]

"Blah blah blah... semantics.... blah blah blah"

Yes, a Mac can be called a "Personal Computer". But get with the times yo. Even APPLE calls Microsoft based systems "PCs" and their own stuff a "Mac". They don't even argue the difference, so what the freak is your problem?
 

jerreece

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[citation][nom]chripuck[/nom]And let me add to my previous comment:Don't come back with the "well they don't have as many contracts so they'll have to lower their prices... competition man!" I say this because it doesn't pertain to any of their other phones that are cross platform.If we're going this far then I want Taco Bell to carry Coke because damnit I want it.[/citation]

Except that I believe Taco Bell is owned by Pepsi, just like Frito Lay is owned by Pepsi. Why would they sell their own competitor's product? ;)
 

mdillenbeck

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[citation][nom]jerreece[/nom]Except that I believe Taco Bell is owned by Pepsi, just like Frito Lay is owned by Pepsi. Why would they sell their own competitor's product?[/citation]
Umm... well, to those places that avoid Pepsi products, I'd say they should start carrying them to increase business - after all, I do avoid going to those places as I am a Pepsi drinker. :)
 

gbismack

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The entire Taco Bell / Coke analogy is completely off based. The correct analogy would be if Coke was ONLY sold at Taco Bell, and the majority of people thought Coke was great but that Taco Bell had horrible service.

I used to have ATT. Fewest dropped calls my A$$. I was having minimum one per day. I've been on Sprint for 3.5 years now. A TOTAL of two dropped calls.
 

gbismack

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And NO phone can bring me back to them after how I was treated when I left. My contract was long expired when I left. They continued to bill me for 7 months; month after month I had to call them, wait on hold, and for them to credit me for that month and tell me they corrected the problem. Yet the next month, I'd get another bill. Finally they tried to charge me an early termination fee, saying that they had no record of me leaving, instead that I renewed my contract!

YET THEY KNEW I HAD NO PHONE!
 
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