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AT&T to Expand TV Service to IPhone and BlackBerry

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Aug. 9 (Bloomberg) -- AT&T Inc. is expanding its U-verse television service to let customers watch some television shows on Apple Inc.’s iPhone and BlackBerry Torch mobile devices.

Only customers with higher-priced U-verse packages may watch the programs -- recorded and sometimes directly downloaded -- on a smartphone, AT&T said today in a statement.

“It’s an incentive to get U-verse or upgrade, if you’re on another package,” David Christopher, chief marketing officer for wireless, said in a telephone interview. He said AT&T has no immediate plans to change the pricing of U-verse or its package of combined telephone, TV and Internet in response to the new service.

Customers won’t be able to link the service to iPad tablet computers or other devices until AT&T reaches content deals for each, Christopher said. A U-verse application is available through Apple’s app store, he said.

AT&T added in the second quarter 209,000 U-verse customers to 2.5 million overall, according to a July 22 statement. The company will begin selling the BlackBerry Torch, made by Research in Motion Ltd., on Aug. 12 for $199.99 with a two-year contract.

The carrier added 32 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $26.86 at 4 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading. The shares have lost 4.2 percent this year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Greg Bensinger in New York at gbensinger1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Peter Elstrom at pelstrom@bloomberg.net

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