June 11, 2013
AT&T Launches Push-To-Talk iPhone App
redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online
AT&T Inc. announced on Monday that it is launching an enhanced push-to-talk (PTT) service for its corporate customers, a move that coincides with the looming shutdown of Nextel, the former king of such services.
A PTT feature is already available on some non-Nextel phones from Sprint, Verizon and AT&T, but this is the first time it will be available for US customers on the iPhone, AT&T´s most popular smartphone
PTT services, which have long been popular for work sites and first responders, let users push a button to broadcast a voice message to a group. In the case of the AT&T´s new app, this includes up to 250 people.
Sprint is shutting down the Nextel network June 30 because it doesn´t support high-speed data traffic. The company has been working hard to transition as many Nextel users as possible to Sprint phones with PTT capability, but faces competition from rivals Verizon Wireless and AT&T.
AT&T said its new PTT function won´t work by simply downloading the app, and that corporate customers will need to work with A&T to integrate it.
It is not clear whether AT&T´s iPhone support will lead to a dramatic rise in the number of customers using PTT services. Furthermore, the iPhone isn´t the typical ruggedized handset used by construction workers, field technicians and first responders.
AT&T also announced on Monday that all of its PTT services can be used over Wi-Fi connections, including its nationwide 32,000-hotspot Wi-Fi network.