Kids, back in the old days, there was one phone company: AT&T, also known as Ma Bell. And you rented phones from them. Then, the government decided to breakup Ma Bell into little Baby Bells. Now, Ma’s back and she’s eating her young. As Ad Age reports:
Not only is AT&T — in the throes of acquiring Cingular owner BellSouth –planning to ditch the Cingular name and ubiquitous, sprightly orange jack, but it will replace it with its own stodgy moniker, renaming the division AT&T Wireless. Such a move could conjure up images of the rotary dial and cause so much confusion that experts estimate it may take another $2 billion in marketing expenses to explain the changes to consumers.
AT&T argues that the $4 billion spent building Cingular — it will lay out around $1 billion this year alone — won’t be wasted, because, in the words of spokesman Michael Coe, it has “created a brand that has led to a customer base which is the largest in the U.S.” The company also claims that the single moniker for all AT&T services will “eliminate customer confusion and make a much more elegant solution.”
An “elegant solution?” Is that another term for “monopoly?”