∞ AT&T network fails iPhone users at the NAMM music show

NAMM is one of my favorite trade shows because it combines great Mac software with musical instruments. Unfortunately, this year NAMM didn’t include a wireless network that actually worked for iPhone users. NAMM is filled with the largest music companies in the world showing off their products. There are also countless celebrities making appearances all over the show and press from around the world. One common theme — most were using an iPhone.

At least 95 percent of the people I saw at the show were sporting iPhones. Sadly, most were having the same problem I was — no network connection.

I would have five bars and the 3G status on, but no data would come through. I couldn’t even make a phone call. I just got the “Call Failure” screen when I tried to call someone.

It wasn’t until the second day that I started to notice other iPhone users around the show shrugging their shoulders and looking at the phone wondering what was going on. It didn’t take long to figure out that AT&T was the problem.

I stopped and talked to many people who seemed to be having problems and without failure, they were all AT&T customers. On the other hand, Verizon customers that I spoke with were very happy with the service.

I suppose that makes sense since there were so many iPhones, but still, we should be able to expect to make a phone call and check email.

I’ve never had many problems with AT&T, but what I experienced in Anaheim last week is totally unacceptable. I expect more from a company I pay to provide a service to me.



  • Phillip

    A&TT needs to get with the program! If you charge for a service you need to provide a 99.9 uptime. Not just take money and not keep your network updated and properly monitored with fast reaction time to trouble.

    • http://www.facebook.com/ianTRC Ian M. Cordero

      amen to that Phillip! I worked for ATT and quite frankly they can be A holes. with their services. they like to push out merchandise and take your money and well even though most of the time i have no problems i have experienced the same results even while at their stores. with poor quality of 3G & Signal. they just wont open their eyes and see past their greed. if it werent for the iphone exclusiveness i would rather change companies or hope endlessly that they get it together and step up the services!! because they sure as hell aint cheap!

  • http://www.facebook.com/flargh Peter Cohen

    Indeed. I can't believe that this is the first time AT&T's network has been overwhelmed by a trade show in Las Vegas.

    • http://twitter.com/foothillsteve @foothillsteve

      Las Vegas is 250 miles from Anaheim. What are you talking about?

  • http://twitter.com/JustinD @JustinD

    Heh, AT&T didn't work at CES either… nor does AT&T work in Madison Square Garden here in NYC (shocker).

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/jdalrymple Jim Dalrymple

    Damn straight!!

  • Michael H.

    Service at NAMM was terrible. I couldn't get important messages and call the entire show – shame on you AT&T!

  • http://twitter.com/foothillsteve @foothillsteve

    I'm certainly not an apologist for AT&T, but I've got to think that if the shoe was on the other foot and it was Verizon with 95% of the phones at NAMM that their network would be having the same problems.

  • kiil

    What I do not understand is how a convention center in this day and age does not offer WiFi service to its guests.

    • http://www.facebook.com/ianTRC Ian M. Cordero

      SO TRUE!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1609815120 Eric Welch

    Just read an article that said AT&T needs to spend $5 billion to match Verizon. For a company that size with so much at stake, you'd think it would be a no-brainer.

    • http://intensedebate.com/people/jdalrymple Jim Dalrymple

      Wow, that's a ton of money!

      • hplan

        Actually, about 50 tons, in $100 bills.

    • http://twitter.com/thegraphicmac @thegraphicmac

      Considering they (like everyone else) probably believe they're going to lose their exclusivity contract with Apple this year, I highly doubt they're going to invest in upgrading their infrastructure. I think they're probably more concerned with keeping the few iPhone customers they'll have left after the rest flock to Verizon or T-Mobile (or whomever Apple chooses to go with).

      • tribalogical

        which is rather ridiculous, because if they DID invest, they'd keep most of them….. it's kind of a self-fulfilling prophecy at this point…

        I haven't had many problems with them in general. But since NAMM this year, it has been awful. Not only the total lack of service at NAMM, but in San Francisco too.. and these days, the 3G service in L.A. is generally sucking….

        Have they completely oversold their bandwidth? I wonder if it's really legal for them to "force" you to keep paying them if they're not providing the service you're supposed to be getting for that money?

  • http://www.dougrobertscreative.com Doug

    I was at NAMM with a friend who could not make outgoing calls from his iPhone 3G, but I was having no trouble at all with my iPhone. Then it dawned on me that I still had a 1st generation iPhone without 3G service. I told my friend to turn off 3G and what do you know… he could call out. So, when you having call out issues, you might try turning off 3G service.

  • Rob

    I know that everybody should know this already, but if you don't, here it is: Daily, I mean daily, turn off your iPhone. Don't question it, don't tell my how stupid it is, just do it. It's like eating vegetables to me, don't like to, but it's the right thing to do. (And unlike my disdain for vegetables, it is much quicker to be done with, less than a minute with the on and off) If you have a clogged area of 3G, by all means, turn off 3G and use EDGE, does that suck? Yep. Does it almost always work? Yep. Look, these arenas and venues don't ever have the capacity to do it all as quick as it is in a apartment or house, where there aren't 10,000-30,000 people draining a network with the biggest data hog ever. Power Cycle Daily…PCD, that's all it takes though to always keep any cell tower updates (not firmware) to AT&T phones…do it with every phone with AT&T, especially the iPhone

  • Brian

    I was at NAMM too and did experience a period of time that my iPhone, nor any of the other 6 iPhones at our booth couldn't do anything accept look good. I turned it off and back on and after a while it was ok. Nevertheless, I was let down, like always by AT&T's service. If Apple goes with Verizon I will switch back to Verizon.

    By the way, NAMM does offer WiFi service, you just have to pay for it!

    • http://www.facebook.com/ianTRC Ian M. Cordero

      yeah WiFi should be free.

  • James

    Why restart everyday in layman's terms.

  • jadnash

    As the saying goes, there's a mapp for that. Hope ATT gets their act together; the bad pr from this is not what they need right now

  • fart

    at&t just sucks no mater where you go…… they blow . as a mater of fact, thats there new slogan —we blow !!!

  • aaron peacock

    at&t is a drag on iphone sales. i simply won't get one as long as i'm locked to a carrier. and at&t is one of the worst carriers to be locked to. apple are you listening? ditch at&t. no one wanted them anyway…

  • shelbydurfee

    I would like APPLE too open their own phone servic, so i could HANG UP ON AT&T & VERIZON GREEDY CO.'s:)

  • Dancingmoondog

    AT&T is one of the reason I took so long to get an iPhone. I hate them. Now whenever I'm in the studio I have to cut off the phone because of the interference caused over the speakers and on recordings if you don't shut it off! I love the iphone but would drop AT&T in a heartbeat when and if they lose the the strangle hold on the iPhone.

  • doctorwho

    Living in New York City, the density of iPhones here is like spending your life living in the NAMM show. Imagine combining NAMM and Groundhog Day (the movie) and you have an idea what it's like.

  • http://www.hoodwaste.com BigFace405

    Yeah, my house caught on fire and I was trying to dial 911 and I kept getting a failed signal. It made me so mad watching fire take over and I couldn't make a call for HELP. Til this day I always keep an extra cell phone from another carrier and soon as my contract is up, no more AT&T heading over to Verizon.

    SHAME ON AT&T!!! Drop them!!!

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