Fred Vogelstein has written an incredibly interesting article on the Apple and AT&T relationship, if you don’t have time to read the whole thing (you should make time) take a look at these choices quotes:
They’d always end up saying, ‘We’re going to have to escalate this to senior AT&T executives,’ and we always said, ‘Fine, we’ll escalate it to Steve and see who wins.’ I think history has demonstrated how that turned out.”
Even more irksome to AT&T, though, has been Apple’s relative silence in the face of thousands of frustrated customers. “AT&T went in thinking the deal was a true partnership: ‘We’re in this together, and we defend each other throughout.’ That wasn’t the way Apple did things at all,” says someone who worked on the project for AT&T. “We’d say, ‘Let’s resolve these issues together,’ and they’d say, ‘No, you resolve them. They’re not our problem. They’re your problem.’”
Even if AT&T had wanted to respond with iPhone ads, Apple would have refused. “Put yourself in Apple’s shoes,” says an Apple executive involved in those conversations. “The reason the Verizon ads were so effective wasn’t because of the iPhone. It was because of AT&T’s network. We would have been letting them use the iPhone to put lipstick on a pig.”
Jobs and his team would continue to discuss switching to Verizon, but these were always short conversations. “Every time the issue of switching came up, it always seemed to cause as many problems as it solved,” according to a source who attended some of these meetings.