Here’s What the Big Carriers and the Feds Agreed To on Cellphone Unlocking

Federal Communications chairman Tom Wheeler had indicated that if the carriers had not reached an understanding by year’s end that the feds were prepared to take regulatory action.

Apple Store a Big Source of Cellphone Sales; Best Buy Is Key for Carriers

AT&T, Sprint, Verizon and T-Mobile still get half or more of sales from their own stores, but a couple of other retailers have emerged as significant players in the cellphone-selling business.

Sprint Cuts 800 Customer Service Jobs, but Doesn’t Foresee Companywide Layoffs

Happier customers mean fewer support calls.

T-Mobile US Makes Gains, but Still Seen as Acquisition Target

The increasingly saturated smartphone market is making for brutal competition between phone makers and mobile operators.

AT&T’s Revamped Stores Will Feature Wood Accents, Lots of Open Space and a Decided Lack of Cash Registers

The company is hoping the new-look stores will be more inviting for consumers who want to get their hands on the latest technology.

We’re Very, Very Happy

If you look at the Russian market, over 80 percent of smartphones are sold in retail outside of carrier stores. We sell through a number of national chains there. … Our activations in Russia for iPhone set a record last quarter — our highest quarter ever. We’re really happy.

Tim Cook on how Apple bypassed carriers and sold a record number of iPhones in Russia

Oh, Canada: Verizon Wireless Eyes Possible Northward Expansion

Verizon Communications CFO Fran Shammo indicated this week that the company is pondering expansion into parts of Canada.

Nokia Smartphone Chief Jo Harlow on Why Carrier Exclusives Still Make Sense

While other flagship models like the iPhone, Galaxy S4 and HTC One are made available across multiple carriers, Nokia is taking a different approach in the U.S. market.

News Byte

AT&T Invites Us to See “What’s Next” on July 16

This summer is turning out to be a hot one … for wireless news. AT&T just sent out a teaser email inviting us to “Get ready for what’s next in wireless” on July 16, and included a list of accolades for its 4G LTE network. While this won’t be an actual event, I expect the carrier will talk about its upcoming LTE-Advanced network. LTE-Advanced promises significantly faster data speeds (theoretical download speeds of three gigabits per second and 1.5Gbps up); AT&T is expected to roll out its service during the second half of 2013.

FCC to Clarify Rules on How Carriers Can Use Customer’s Call Data

In the wake of the Carrier IQ flap a couple years back, the Federal Communications Commission wants to be clear about the rules around how carriers collect and store call data.