AT&T Unveils Fast-Upgrade `Next' Plan

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July 16 (Bloomberg) -- AT&T will start selling phones and tablets on an installment plan with the option to upgrade yearly, mimicking a strategy adopted by rival T-Mobile US. Telecom, Media and Finance Associates Principal Tim Farrar speaks with Emily Chang on Bloomberg Television's "Bloomberg West." (Source: Bloomberg)

How significant is this move?

I think is a first baby step in the direction of trying to limit subsidies that the carriers have had to offer.

That has been a big factor in the iphone sales, in terms of hitting the profitability of at&t and verizon.

They have been wanting to push back at that for a while.

At&t is making a big move in that direction following up from t-mobile.

The question is, how worried are they about t-mobile gaining a lead on them?

How does this plan stacked up to what t-mobile is trying to do?

Well, if we take this in conjunction with friday's did, it will be interesting to see when all of the documents come out whether they were looking at other options for sale of the company.

I think these things coming close to one another means that at&t is pretty concerned to try to maintain its lead over t- mobile.

On one hand, it certainly looks like perhaps the carriers are jockeying for power here.

Will this gives them leverage over device makers like apple?

It has been good for apple with the iphone at a high price.

The carriers have been concerned about the level of subsidies.

It has been at a level where people pay a high price.

Whether people can live with a slightly cheaper model or if they want the high-end phone, there has been a lot of talk about apple coming out with a cheaper version of the iphone.

Whether they are paying 30 something dollars for the most expensive or a cheaper phone , some opt for a cheaper version which they would not surly have done if you had a heavily subsidized price?

What does this mean for verizon?

It is part of a trend, it would not surprise me if arise and follow doing something similar.

At&t hasn't changed the price of the plan you are paying for.

They are looking at the phone for a different way.

People being able to give up the contract and get earlier upgrades.

Whether that is enough of an incentive for them to pay an extra $30 a month.

Verizon might go in the same direction.

The question will be whether there will be more pressure on price in general, pricing of the service plans, once people compare or directly the prices against t-mobile.

What does this mean for t- mobile?

Is this evidence that t-mobile is gaining traction in terms of upsetting the balance of power among the carriers?

Well, t-mobile said last year that they were losing customers to at&t than they were gaining away from them.

Now, they claim to have reversed that position.

I think that t-mobile is gaining some traction.

As they catch up with at&t and verizon, i think that there is a lot for the two bigger carriers going forward.

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.

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