Is Apple hanging up on AT&T?

AT&T has made a mountain of money--and polished its reputation--during its partnership with Apple and the iPhone. But pundits are saying the love affair between the two may be on the rocks after Apple essentially snubbed its U.S. partner during the coming out party for Apple’s iPhone 3G S at its Worldwide Developers Conference yesterday.

AT&T has never been a favorite of iPhone users, who consider it to be monolithic and a throwback to the old-style carrier model. Its network is so-so at best, and its customer service can be a nightmare to navigate. Yesterday, Apple read off a list of carriers supporting iPhone tethering. Missing? AT&T, which also won’t support sending photos as SMS messages until later this summer. Even the mention of the telecom drew boos from attendees.

The engagement of AT&T and Apple has always been a little tenuous. Increasingly, the tide may be turning to Verizon, a suitor with a better network and a company more in tune with Apple’s entrepreneurial flair.

For more:
- see this PC World story
- check out this video tour of the iPhone 3G S

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