Switch to AT&T and get $650 per line, second phone free

AT&T wants you! So much so that the carrier is currently offering $650 per line when you switch from Sprint, T-Mobile, or Verizon and bring your number with you. What’s more, if you buy one of the latest devices, you’ll get a second handset free. Beginning today, if you switch to AT&T and buy a smartphone […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


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Apple Seeds Third Beta of iOS 9.3 to Developers

Apple today seeded the third beta of an upcoming iOS 9.3 update to developers for testing purposes, two weeks after seeding the second iOS 9.3 beta and two months after the public release of iOS 9.2. iOS 9.3 has been in testing since January 11.

The third iOS 9.3 beta is available as an over-the-air update and through the iOS section of the Apple Developer Center.

As a major .1 update to the iOS 9 operating system, iOS 9.3 introduces several new features. There’s a Night Shift mode to reduce the amount of blue light iOS users are exposed to in the evening by shifting the iPad or iPhone display to a warmer (yellower) color spectrum, and there are several features designed to improve the iPad for Education program, such as multi-user login.

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Multiple apps and features are also seeing updates in iOS 9.3. Apple News includes more personalized recommendations, faster updates, a landscape view on the iPhone, and support for in-line video, while Health includes a new Apple Watch-style „Activity“ view and Notes has an option to password protect individual entries.

Apple Music for CarPlay offers „New“ and „For You“ sections for better music discovery, and a Nearby Feature in CarPlay Maps offers more information about what’s close by. Paired with watchOS 2.2, an iPhone running iOS 9.3 is able to support multiple Apple Watches, and for iPhone 6s users, there are new Quick Actions for Weather, Settings, Compass, Health, App Store, and iTunes Store.

The second iOS 9.3 beta added a Control Center toggle for the Night Shift feature, and new additions in the third iOS 9.3 beta will be listed below.

What’s new in iOS 9.3 beta 3:

Verizon Wi-Fi calling – The third beta of iOS 9.3 adds Wi-Fi calling for Verizon users, allowing them to place calls over a wireless connection when cellular connectivity is poor.

T-Mobile bug fix – Today’s beta includes a carrier update for T-Mobile users, fixing a bug that prevented apps from loading over a cellular connection.

Related Roundup: iOS 9
Tag: iOS 9.3
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AT&T to Stop Offering Two-Year Phone Contracts Starting January 8

Starting on January 8, 2016, AT&T plans to introduce a „pricing simplification effort“ that will see the end of device subsidies and two-year contracts. According to an internal training document shared by Engadget, new and existing AT&T customers will only be able to purchase a smartphone at full price or with an AT&T Next payment plan going forward.

As outlined in the document, the new rules apply to all of the phones that AT&T sells, including smartphones and more basic devices, which will be paid for using new installment plans. More information on how AT&T will handle corporate accounts and non-smartphone devices like tablets and wearables will become available after an official announcement from AT&T, but it appears certain corporate users will be able to continue making two-year contract purchases.

The shift away from two-year contracts and iPhone subsidies began with T-Mobile in 2013, when the company introduced its Un-carrier payment plans uncoupling device costs from plan costs. Verizon followed suit in August of 2015, debuting new smartphone rate plans and eliminating its subsidized two-year contract option for new users.

Existing Verizon customers can still renew their two-year contracts, but AT&T’s no-contract implementation is more extreme and will not offer existing customers the option to keep their contracts once they expire.

AT&T has already been working on shifting away from two-year contracts by pushing its Next plans. In June of 2015, AT&T forced Apple and other third-party retailers to remove the option to purchase AT&T phones with a two-year contract, leaving customers with AT&T Next or a full-priced smartphone as their only third-party purchase options.

Update: AT&T has confirmed its plans to stop offering two-year contracts in a statement given to Re/code.

„With $0 down for well-qualified customers, the ability to upgrade early and down-payment options available with even lower monthly installments, our customers are overwhelmingly choosing AT&T Next,“ AT&T told Re/code. „Starting January 8, AT&T Next will be the primary way to get a new smartphone at AT&T.“

Tag: AT&T
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T-Mobile Offers Verizon Customers Free Year of Hulu to Switch

T-Mobile has announced a fourth „Un-carrier Unwrapped“ holiday promotion that offers Verizon customers 12 months of Hulu’s Limited Commercials plan for free, a value of $7.99 per month or $96 annually.

The offer is valid for Verizon customers that switch any phone number to a T-Mobile Simple Choice postpaid plan between December 11 and December 17.

Verizon customers who switch to T-Mobile will receive a text message with a $100 Hulu subscription gift code, enough to pay for more than 12 months of Hulu’s Limited Commercials plan.

Verizon customers can combine the offer with T-Mobile’s Carrier Freedom promotion, which provides up to $650 towards a balance owing or to pay off early termination fees (ETFs) with an eligible device trade-in.

T-Mobile is also offering Verizon customers that switch up to half off its lineup of financed in-store accessories:

That could mean as much as a $125 discount on the hottest mobile gifts, like the latest smartwatches, UE Boom and JBL Bluetooth speakers, top-of-the-line headphones, Fitbit fitness trackers, Guitar Hero Live for iOS and more.

This limited time offer is part of T-Mobile’s monthlong „Un-carrier Unwrapped“ holiday promotion that offered three months of free unlimited LTE data to Simple Choice customers, a $200 bill credit for Sprint customers and $200 off a 128GB iPhone 6s for AT&T customers.

Tags: T-Mobile, Verizon, Hulu
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Verizon will test free “sponsored” data soon

Verizon is planning to bring free sponsored data to the masses according to a scoop from Re/code which found out the testimg phase is just days away. In an interview with the site, Verizon VP Marni Walden revealed the network is working with a few partners during the testing phase and intends to make the […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


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Verizon’s Wi-Fi Calling Coming to Galaxy S6 on Monday, iPhone ‘Early Next Year’

Verizon yesterday announced that it will begin rolling out support for Wi-Fi Calling next week, starting on Monday with Samsung’s Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge. iPhone users will need to wait a bit longer, with an update enabling the feature expected „early next year.“

Wi-Fi Calling will initially be available on the Samsung Galaxy S 6 and Samsung Galaxy S 6 Edge and will be rolled out as a software update in phases. Additional Android and iOS devices will receive Wi-Fi Calling capabilities via future software updates expected early next year.

Wi-Fi Calling allows phone calls to be automatically placed over Wi-Fi connections in areas where cellular service is poor, seamlessly transitioning between cellular and Wi-Fi as needed.

Sprint and T-Mobile have supported the feature for some time, and AT&T launched its support in early October. AT&T made waves by claiming Sprint and T-Mobile have been offering the feature illegally, due to Federal Communications Commission requirements for supporting a teletypewriter (TTY) feature for deaf and hard-of-hearing users.

AT&T received its waiver from the FCC just days later, and Verizon followed with its own request, with the FCC approving it several weeks ago. Sprint and T-Mobile have not received waivers from the FCC, but continue to operate Wi-Fi Calling and believe no waiver is required.

Tags: Verizon, Wi-Fi calling
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Google unleashes wonderfully nerdy Star Wars Easter egg

As a company staffed by some bona fide geeks (and, hey, we’re not complaining!) Google is undoubtedly excited about the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens. And what better way to show it than with possibly my favorite Easter egg in Google history? If you haven’t heard about it yet, read on to discover more. […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


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Google shoots first with Star Wars virtual reality series

Google has teamed up with Disney and Verizon to develop a new virtual reality series in celebration of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The story ties directly into the new movie, and Google Cardboard owners can enjoy it on December 2 — but there’s more to check out today! Alongside the virtual reality series, Disney and Google are launching […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


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