TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Cingular - AT&T ?

Cingular - AT&T ?
8 May 2007 06:55:00 -0700

Could someone explain today's makeup of AT&T and its relation to
Cingular and other companies?

If I recall correctly, a few years ago Cingular, an independent
company, bought out the wireless network from AT&T. Further, Cingular
did a much better job running it. But now they're back using the AT&T

Now I believe AT&T actually no longer exists; that it was bought out
by one of the baby Bells, but they're keeping the name instead of the
baby's name, correct?

What lines of business are AT&T in today?

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: The *A*merican *T*elephone and *T*elegraph
Company's recent (last decade or so) history is thus: AT&T owned
several operating companies of which two were Bell South and Southwestern
Bell (1982). Cingular Wireless in those days was called 'Southwestern
Bell Mobility' and it was the 'B' carrier in the old A/B 'competitor'
versus 'wireline' arrangement. Then Judge Greene had his hissy fit and
bashed up AT&T. A few years later, Southwestern Bell became SBC, and
Cingular Wireless continued to be owned by SBC/Southwestern Bell, or
about half it it at least. The other half of it was owned by Bell South,
and it was decided to change its name from Southwestern Bell Mobility
to 'Cingular Wireless' in order to reflect the fact that it was not an
exclusive Southwestern Bell property. So half of Cingular belonged to
SBC and half of it belonged to Bell South. AT&T Wireless decided to go
out of business, mainly because they were doing such a poor job of
running the company, and the AT&T Wireless infrastructure was sold in
parts: quite a bit to SBC and the rest of it to Bell South. SBC was
busy cannibalizing other telcos, including Illinois Bell/Ameritech.

Then a couple years ago, SBC decided to buy out its former parent AT&T
and AT&T decided to buy out its former child Bell South. So the one
half of Cingular Wireless owned by SBC was buying out the other half of
Cingular Wireless which was owned by Bell South. SBC changed its name
as a result of the purchase to (lower case) 'at&t' and both halves of
Cingular Wireless became one and changed their collective names
to 'at&t' as well.

A practical application of this relates to here in Independence. In
the year 2000, AT&T had wireless service, then they decided to blow
town and Cingular Wireless took over. Now in 2007, Cingular Wireless
is gone and the reincarnated at&t is back. at&t, which has the
distinction of being its own grandfather claims they are nothing like
the telco of the same name in the past, called AT&T. But if I go over
to Penn Street downtown and their storefront, if I scrape off the
paint which says at&t, I see the older layer of paint which says
'Cingular Wireless' and if I keep on scraping I see yet another layer
of paint which says 'AT&T Wireless', all on the same signage.

The new 'at&t' says they are now into landline telephone service
(their traditional thing), wireless telephone service, cable service
(both television and internet) and 'other things' such as high-defin-
ition television. They are flooding us here (in Independence at least)
with promises of 'all their services' for a mere $99.00 per month.
I hope this answers some of your questions at least. PAT]

Post Followup Article Use your browser's quoting feature to quote article into reply
Go to Next message: Patrick E. Burns: "Question About NXX Exchange Numbers: Are They Geographic Areas?"
Go to Previous message: TELECOM Digest Editor: "The Archives MBOX-style Messages Now Complete to End of 2006"
Next in thread: Steven J. Sobol: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: Steven J. Sobol: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: Al Gillis: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: Steven J. Sobol: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: John L: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: John Levine: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: Ken Abrams: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: Steven Lichter: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: T: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: John Levine: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
May be reply: John Levine: "Re: Cingular - AT&T ?"
TELECOM Digest: Home Page