Finally, the iPhone is coming to Montana!

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by mentalward, Jun 22, 2010.

  1. mentalward macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    Location:
    Kalispell, MT
    #1
    All 7 of the iPhone fans in Montana can rejoice! The FCC has finally approved the AT&T takeover of the old Alltel markets here, finally making the iPhone available to us (after a conversion period, at least). Here is the ruling for FCC followers:

    http://www.fcc.gov/transaction/att-verizon.html

    For those who aren't familiar with what's going on, here it is in a nutshell: Verizon bought Alltel in most markets, but in some areas like where I live (Kalispell, MT) Verizon could not take over Alltel since it would leave them as the only major service provider. AT&T offered to buy the markets last May, and it was finally approved by the FCC after a much-longer-than-expected interim period (bear in mind that although AT&T has roaming coverage here now, it is not native coverage and we can't own AT&T phones here). AT&T will be rolling out a 3G network across all the markets they bought, which are in Montana, North and South Dakota, Minnesota, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, and other states.

    *Whew!* Now I'm off to bed...
     
  2. Ishimaru macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #2
    They have cell phones and Internet in Montana?? Wow! Talk about progress.
     
  3. woosah macrumors regular

    woosah

    Joined:
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    Location:
    FL
    #3
    Isn't there some traffic on the 101 you could be playing in?
     
  4. Ishimaru macrumors 6502a

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  5. woosah macrumors regular

    woosah

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2007
    Location:
    FL
    #5
    I missed the humor, that's for sure. I found it rude and belittling.


    To stay on topic... OP, congrats, I hope you enjoy your inevitable iPhone 4 purchase!
     
  6. mentalward thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    Location:
    Kalispell, MT
    #6
    I know, right? Even better, the cell phones they have around here actually WORK! For voice calls, even!

    In all seriousness, the cellular/internet infrastructure we have here (at least in the western part of the state) is actually pretty good. My wife moved here from 5 miles outside Janesville, WI (65,000 people, not a tiny town by any means) and for the first time was able to enjoy broadband at home without having to resort to HughesNet satellite.

    I mourn the communications infrastructure in this country.
     
  7. mentalward thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    Location:
    Kalispell, MT
    #7
    I think that this is good news for a lot of people who wanted iPhones but couldn't because AT&T didn't have native coverage over a fairly large swath of the country. That is what I personally found to be the most frustrating aspect of AT&T's exclusivity deal with Apple.

    Here is a map showing the areas that AT&T will convert (and a general view of some of the areas where people were locked out of owning an iPhone):

    [​IMG]
     
  8. iCheddar macrumors 6502a

    iCheddar

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2007
    Location:
    South Dakota
    #8
    Well I'll be damned.

    South Dakota is finally going to get AT&T service.

    Mentalward, where did you source that photo? Also, has anyone found a timeline on conversion? My contract with a regional GSM carrier is ending soon so I was planning on switching to Verizon, but if the roll-out is fast enough I might not bother.
     
  9. Maverick1337 macrumors 65816

    Maverick1337

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  10. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

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    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #10
    What do you expect? Florida... :p
     
  11. iCheddar macrumors 6502a

    iCheddar

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2007
    Location:
    South Dakota
    #11
    I tracked down an old email I send to a press liason for AT&T about the transition. Keep in mind that she was the only person at AT&T (including the President's office) to provide me a straight answer.

    Here's what she said on June 4th:
    Mind you, I sent her another email just tonight, but I expect we won't be able to get AT&T service for another year. The benefit of that wait however, is that we'll be able to get iPhone 5:D
     
  12. caranddriver macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    #12
    I went to Yellowstone, the Grand Tetons and Glacier NPs last summer with my iPhone 3G and the AT&T service was beyond pitiful. We were driving and once we passed Salt Lake City, 3G service was a distant memory. I was ecstatic if I could get a decent EDGE signal that allowed maps and email d/l. My parent's Verizon service was much much better.
     
  13. mentalward thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    Location:
    Kalispell, MT
    #13
    Faq

    I am an alltel customer in Montana, and when I log into the Alltel website I am redirected to an AT&T transition site. It contains a FAQ which I am posting here:

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Q. When will my service move to AT&T?
    A. We will roll out service on a market-by-market basis as our network launches occur over the next year. Your service will transition to AT&T after the network launches in your area. We will contact you in advance of your transition date with more information.

    Q. Do I need to do anything at this time?
    A. Your current wireless service will continue to work as it does today. At the appropriate time, we will contact you with further information and notify you of anything you need to do.
    To ensure that you receive important information in the future, please make sure that your current billing address is up to date. If you have recently had a change in address, please contact your carrier and update it.

    Q. Will my current coverage change?
    A. No. During the transition period your current coverage will not change.
    Once the transition is complete, your coverage area will be similar to what you have today and you will be on the nation’s fastest 3G network. In addition, when you move outside of your home area, you will be using the AT&T network, which covers over 97 percent of all Americans.

    Q. Will I need a different phone due to the transition to AT&T?
    A. During the transition period, you should continue using your current phone or data device. However, in advance of your service transitioning to AT&T, we will contact you and provide you with a choice of phones and data devices, comparable to what you have today, at no additional cost.

    Q. Is my contract still valid as a result of this merger?
    A. Yes. Your current terms and conditions apply.

    Q. Can I switch to another carrier without paying an Early Termination Fee before my service transitions to AT&T?
    A. Your current contract terms and conditions apply, including those provisions related to Early Termination Fees. If you are no longer subject to a contract, there would be no Early Termination Fee to disconnect.

    Q. Can I still make changes to my current rate plan, service, and features?
    A. Yes, for the time being, you can still make changes to your account via your current Customer Service contacts.

    Q. Are there any changes to my bill statement or how I make my payments?
    A. There are no changes to your bill statement or your bill due date at this time. Please continue to make payments as you do today. After your service transitions, you will receive bill statements from, and make payments to, AT&T.

    Q. Who do I contact if I need help?
    A. During the transition period, please continue to contact Customer Service as you do today.
     
  14. koilvr macrumors 6502

    koilvr

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Location:
    Knoxville, TN
    #14
    Did'nt Montana win some superbowls during the 80's?
     
  15. koilvr macrumors 6502

    koilvr

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    Jun 15, 2010
    Location:
    Knoxville, TN
    #15
    On a serious Note thou Montana is gorgeous I drove all of I90, I94,I15 in Montana & its absolutely gorgeous My favorite state out of all with the exception of Alaska.
     
  16. mentalward thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    Location:
    Kalispell, MT
    #16
    I absolutely love it here...30 minutes from Glacier Park!:D
     
  17. iCheddar macrumors 6502a

    iCheddar

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2007
    Location:
    South Dakota
    #17
    I got a response similar to what you've posted above.

    [​IMG]
     
  18. woosah macrumors regular

    woosah

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2007
    Location:
    FL
    #18
    Hey now, I lived in Seattle for almost 6 years. I have to live in the Sunshine State for the rest of my life to make up for all the gloomy days I experienced. :cool:

    I love it here, wouldn't live anywhere else, and yes, I've been to Portland. :D
     
  19. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #19
    I lived in Florida for a summer, it was beautiful and I even enjoyed the daily thunderstorms. The people are friendly and the wildlife is great (I witnessed that big crab migration thing! It was crazy). You have a lovely state. :)
     
  20. Bloake macrumors 6502

    Bloake

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2008
    #20
    so Verizon will need to update this:
    [​IMG]
     
  21. iCheddar macrumors 6502a

    iCheddar

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2007
    Location:
    South Dakota
    #21
    I wouldn't count on that.

    I seriously doubt AT&T is going to bother with large scale 3G deployment in the middle of nowhere.

    Hell, knowing them they'll just retrofit the CDMA towers and only deploy EDGE.:rolleyes:
     
  22. onionperson654 macrumors regular

    onionperson654

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    #22
    Hey Mentalward. I also live in the Flathead (i.e. Kalispell), and currently use Alltel.

    For all of those who may have doubts, service is actually very good in the populated areas. The major, MAJOR downside to Alltel is the lack of any decent smartphones (i.e. no iPhone, Droids, EVO, or even a Palm Pre), while they are cheaper (and have better coverage where I live) than verizon.

    Talking to a local Alltel rep (who got this not from official company releases but knowing a number of the install technicians), it sounds like they have been building out the GSM network for some time now with a substantial amount of progress in locations such as Big Mountain, etc, and the last major hurdle is some of the work on the Indian reservations (maybe it requires different paperwork, I'm not sure why the delay).

    I had given up waiting any realistic amount of time, but with this announcement (it had been expected for the last month), I would guess we could see AT&T coming sooner than 12 months. The big hurdle is not technical anymore, but corporate transitioning of all the stores. Hopefully, they see the Christmas market as a big one for the 1 million people in Montana and the millions more in the other states and we'll be able to switch in the next month.


    Fingers Crossed...


    P.S. Who needs a phone in such beautiful weather.

    P.P.S. No reception in Glacier... except if you climb to the top of a tall mountain. If you like to hike, try it some time.
     
  23. onionperson654 macrumors regular

    onionperson654

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2007
    #23
    Actually, this is a perfect time, and Verizon has a well rolled out 3G network they'll have to compete with.


    I think this is more of a technical mistake on the point of the spokesperson than a hint of what's to come, but this could be a good time to put in LTE while they're doing all the rest. Note the phrase "long term evolution" in this local Daily Interlake article:

    "Once the GSM network is in place, former Alltel subscribers will be given the opportunity to switch to an AT&T long-term evolution device at no charge and stay with their current rates and plans or upgrade to a higher-level device such as the iPhone."

    http://www.dailyinterlake.com/news/local_montana/article_6535a370-8009-11df-9a0c-001cc4c002e0.html


    -And there is absolutely 0% chance the Interlake would have any ideas about future iPhones being LTE, that's more of a general AT&T thing.
     
  24. ashley1496 macrumors regular

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    Jul 10, 2008
    #24
    I'm from Whitefish! But I'm in Seattle now... :)
     
  25. iCheddar macrumors 6502a

    iCheddar

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2007
    Location:
    South Dakota
    #25
    Funny what the focus of that article was on. It wasn't so much about AT&T coming to Montana, rather iPhone coming to Montana.

    Perhaps that speaks to how Apple is trying to make cell carriers like ISPs. Really, when one thinks of AT&T, one thinks of iPhone.

    Either way, I'm not maintaining faith in AT&T to do a good job, my contract with a local carrier is up soon, so I'll be switching to Verizon for the time being.

    AT&T says 12 months rollout, then I'll go with a 12 month VZW contract.:D
     

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