AT&T defends voice quality

If you’re on an iPhone in a major metropolitan city, you know that AT&T’s voice quality and service can be a joke. But AT&T’s CEO Randall Stephenson said the company is working hard to address this and that the voice service is almost where it should be.

“We’ve been going hard at the voice quality issue,” Stephenson said during an interview with CNBC.

The interview comes at a time when AT&T is still facing much scrutiny and criticism over its service for the iPhone. This comes despite the fact that AT&T has topped multiple independent data coverage tests, but don’t tell that to Apple smartphone owners. I know the primary complaint from iPhone owners in San Francisco is that it drops calls at a ridiculous rate.

Interestingly enough, AT&T may have been taking the brunt of the criticism even though the hardware may have been at fault. Apple was a relatively noob to the cell phone game (don’t bring up the ROCKR) and there were reports that the initial hardware wasn’t as good for network connections as a device from a veteran of the industry like Research In Motion or Motorola. Apple is a quick learner though and its next smartphone may address the calling problems.

A neat aspect of the iPhone 4 is that its stainless steel frame will also double as an antenna. This is cool for a variety of reasons, as it could make calling on an iPhone a pleasant experience. Beyond that, moving the components outside means there’s more space inside the device for a bigger battery. It also lets Apple make a thinner device – at 9.3mm thick, Apple said the iPhone 4 will be the thinnest smartphone on the planet. We’re still not sure how drops and external scratches will impact this antenna but it will be something to look forward to.

How say you, readers? How has the voice quality been for you on AT&T?

[Via Reuters]

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