AT&T Not Interested In an Open Marriage With Apple

Experts doubts Apple's international deals will open the iPhone up to other U.S. providers anytime soon

By Sajid Farooq
|  Tuesday, Sep 29, 2009  |  Updated 5:18 PM PDT
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Apple Reveals iPhone OS Version 3

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Don't pop the champagne bottle yet. AT&T is showing no sign of letting the iPhone go.

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Could AT&T's grip on the iPhone be weakening?

If Apple's international dealings are any indicator it could be. Over the past two days the iPhone maker announced it has signed a deal with both Orange and Vodafone to service the popular smartphone in the U.K. Shockingly at the same time, none the less.

Still industry insiders don't think the exclusive relationship between the sole cellular service provider in the U.S. and Apple is going to end anytime soon, despite rumors that the iPhone could start seeing other American carriers as early as next year.

AT&T has tried to clam angry critics of its exclusive rights to the Steve Jobs moneymaker. Just this week it introduced multimedia messaging after long hesitating to open up its network to the data heavy technology. Meanwhile angry customers not appeased by the move have figured out a way around another AT&T iPhone block: tethering.

Other American cellular providers don't appear as eager as they once were to strike a deal with Apple. After Verizon Wireless failed to secure the iPhone, the company decided to develop its own app store instead of groveling at Apple's heals.

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