AT&T to some iPhone users: stay with us and get a free microcell
[Via Ars Technica]
AT&T has quietly begun offering microcells to some iPhone customers in hopes of keeping them from defecting to Verizon. Some readers have reported receiving e-mails from AT&T with the microcell offer “as our way of saying ‘thank you’ for continued loyalty,” though not all AT&T iPhone users have received it.
The e-mail offer comes with a bar code and has instructions to visit an AT&T store to receive a “free” 3G microcell, which retails at $199.99. The microcell, which is actually a femtocell device, acts as a sort of 3G signal extender and allows you to receive a cellular signal on your phone in small areas—such as your home or office—where you might not normally get signal. (The femtocell device actually creates new 3G signal using your own broadband connection, so it doesn’t really “boost” signal so much as it creates new signal.) AT&T first started selling its own microcells to customers last year and they have been moderately popular among those who live in low- or troubled-coverage areas.
I have been out of contract for quite some time, waiting for the Verizon iPhone to come out and see what deals appeared. This could be one but they have not sent me anything to try and get me to sign up for another 2 years. You’d think I would be someone they would be pressing hard, giving all sorts of deals to win my favor.
But all I hear is…