FAIL: APPLE can’t get AT&T to turn on MMS, yet developers can - Macenstein

FAIL: APPLE can’t get AT&T to turn on MMS, yet developers can

Faithful Macenstein reader Matthew writes:

Hey Doc, I was just checking out Apple’s page on iPhone OS 3.0 and it looks like even Apple web designers don’t have access to MMS features in the iPhone 3.0 betas. Here’s a snapshot of the MMS screen with the little red exclamation points next to the picture they tried to send along with the link.

those would show up every time I tried to send an MMS (AT&T hasn’t enabled it for beta testers), but since I convinced them to enable it for me for developing reasons I never get them anymore. They basically just show up when there’s an error when sending MMS (usually because it isn’t enabled). It’s pretty funny how they couldn’t get a screenshot where it worked.

Man.. so no one over at Apple has the clout to get them to activate MMS on one of their iPhones for a screen grab? I mean, they couldn’t even Photoshop those out for the screenshot? Or does even Apple have no idea how MMS will finally look when (IF) it ever works on AT&T?

God, I used to be able to defend (in my mind, at least) Apple’s choice of iPhone provider, but after today’s debacle where MMS and Tethering were announced for the rest of the world and eventually maybe kind sorta for the US, it is getting pretty damn hard to argue Apple has the consumer’s best interests in mind in sticking with AT&T.

20 Responses to “FAIL: APPLE can’t get AT&T to turn on MMS, yet developers can”
  1. Tice says:

    Nice find. ; )

  2. Jonro says:

    I think we all wish there was competition between carriers for the iPhone. Hopefully, one day soon. This isn’t in defense of AT&T, but let’s see how long it actually takes them to activate these features. After all, 3.0 hasn’t been released yet. They may get their act together quickly.

  3. ValkyrieStudio says:

    That part of the keynote amazed me – I agree with Jonro and HOPE they get the features sorted out quickly. I want one of these things BAD (I skipped the 3G waiting for this one), and I think it’s downright embarrassing on AT&T’s part that a device from a US-based company, originally sold only in the US, is going to be lacking two *gigantic* features in its own country of origin.

    Tethering isn’t a big deal to me, though I know it’s feverishly sought-after, so they better get in gear before people get too up in arms over it.

  4. Chicago_SC says:

    Nice Catch indeed! LOL

  5. Matt Davis says:

    wow i can’t believe i submitted something and it made it to the first page!! i feel so cool hahahaa

  6. XYber Druid says:

    at this point it would be foolish to remain with at&t exclusively anyone who wants an iPhone on at&t ‘s net work has one and there are tons of ppl like ME who are biding our time till we can get it on a GOOD network

  7. Matt Davis says:

    i feel like apple wants people to stop expecting insane updates every year…

  8. Pjotr NL says:

    now you people in the US aren’t getting something the rest of the world does instead of the other way around. We (e.g. the rest of the world) don’t have access to a lot of things Apple does offer in US. And now you are the ones b*tching… I mean come on. Lighten up.
    the US isn’t the center of the world…

  9. Soup says:

    Yes, we can bitch. Apple is an American company. AT&T is an American company. American products and services that don’t work in America. America isn’t the center of the world, but it’s the center of our world.

  10. Matt says:

    My bottom line is are the features in the new iphone 3g S the same as the 3G with OS 3 minus the new video camera?
    Will you be able to do tethering, voice control and Compass?
    If it’s all in the software I don’t see the point in the 3G S over the 3G if all you get is
    a better camera and a little more space.
    That is another question that puzzles me. why was the last ipod they made 180 gig and we are only up to 32 gig on the 3 gen iphone?

  11. David, NYC says:

    2 Pjotr:

    Actually, there are lots of things that aren’t available in the US that are available to most of the world, and yes, I complain endlessly about them (just not here, usually).

    In Japan, people can make purchases using their cell phone.
    Across Europe, cell phones are universally GSM (as I understand it — you might know better).

    Pretty much any time you find a service that combines technology (new) with public utility (old), the US is going to be f*k’d up, because we don’t understand how to combine government regulation with business.

    Banking is a good example. I’m a Citibank customer, but if I try to deposit a check in my account in, say, California, I actually have to wait for them to mail the check to New York, because Citibank (NY) and Citibank (CA) are effectively two separate banks.

    Arcane? Yes. Foolish? Yes.

    And really, the reason that AT&T won’t turn on iPhone MMS is because there is absolutely ZERO profit incentive to do so: huge spike in bandwidth use (increased cost) + no competition with iPhone users (little downside risk) = they would be idiots to do this.

  12. Matt says:

    XYber Druid i read that verizon will have an iphone some time this year on there CDMA wireless network. Being a current verizon customer do i wait or not i don’t know.

  13. andy says:


    It’s not that ALL Americans think we’re the center of the world as a people (some do, so I won’t speak for them), it’s that Apple and AT&T are US based companies. So for a US based company not to give it’s base country the options and features first is close to a parent feeding the neighbor’s kids before feeding their own. It’s got nothing to do with who thinks they’re more important because as I said, not every American thinks that way.

    On the non-cultural dispute side, I do think there was a great deal of ball dropping on both company’s part. It’s one thing to tout a technology and give it a future release date, but it’s another to be two of the most successful technology companies in the US and fall short on providing a tech that other companies are offering and have offered for quite some time.

  14. Rob says:

    Epic Fail!

  15. Art says:

    If Apple opened the phone up to Verison, I bet within 2 years AT&T would be ready for TARP funds. And they would get it. Then MaBell would become UncleSamBell…

  16. Vidiot says:

    Both tethering and MMS work just fine on my Nokia phone… via AT&T, thank you very much. True, part of the new AT&T’s Cingular legacy is an aggressive, customer-be-damned attitude at times, but don’t blame the carrier when something’s screwy in the device or software. Makes you seem less “fair and balanced”.

  17. imajoebob says:

    My pure, unadulterated, uninformed, unsubstantiated, uneducated guess:

    AT&T promised all this to Apple, but doesn’t have the bandwidth to support it. Remember that (supposedly) AT&T has to provide exclusive bandwidth to iPhone customers as pert of the deal, with minimum performance requirements. I’d be surprised if any renewal of the agreement didn’t include penalties to AT&T if they can’t deliver, maybe even to the point of losing exclusivity after a certain point, and even losing new S customers without termination fees..

    So if the crazies (iPhonebois?) keep buying this thing like it cures baldness and makes your kids smarter, why would Apple change anything? Until Apple sees these shortcomings affecting sales, they have no incentive to end the AT&T agreement.

  18. Later this summer…

  19. V.i.k.t.o.r says:

    In the Spanish Apple Site they make the ,,icons” disappear…LoL It seems it is working over here?? LLLL


  20. Kevin says:

    AT&T just proves again how Sh#tty of a phone company they truly are … No MMS till whenever ? how about .. We’ll have the network to capacity by feb 09 ? again, epic fail.. the Palm Pre I just bought Seems to work fine, This is really getting OLD. Not To mention Sprint Coverage is about the same, & it’s al there for 100.00 a month, (tethering included, MMS included) F*ck You Very Much AT&T

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