by Mike Masnick

AT&T Says AT&T Wireless Broke Their Brand

from the whoops. dept

It never really made sense when AT&T spun out AT&T Wireless that they let the mobile company keep the name. It was clearly very confusing to customers who still think they're the same company and it was a clear risk to AT&T's brand -- as well as their ability to offer their own wireless service at another point in the future. While it was clear that AT&T was just trying to cash in on the hype around wireless, the fact that they didn't realize that wireless had to be a part of their future was a bit scary. Of course, among the many things that did happen was that AT&T Wireless faltered and did, indeed, harm the overall AT&T brand name. So, while they're in the process of (maybe) selling out to Cingular, and AT&T wants the name back, many are questioning whether that's a good idea. AT&T Wireless has such a weak reputation right now that starting a new mobile phone service under that brand may be an uphill battle. AT&T is now suggesting that AT&T Wireless broke their agreement by screwing up the brand and being so poor at customer service. Right now, honestly, this looks more like a negotiating ploy concerning the return of the name, because if the Cingular deal does go through, then it shouldn't much matter any more if the old AT&T Wireless can't use the name any more.

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