AT&T

Can I use my own router with U-Verse?

Episode 1611

Alex from Durham, NC

Alex would like to use his own router with AT&T Uverse. Can he? Leo says only if you aren't getting your TV service from UVerse. That requires AT&T's proprietary router. You could turn the AT&T router into bridge mode or IP Pass through, and then use your router with it. That's possible. Will it affect the speed? Leo says no, but it could affect whether you can select your own DNS service. You can also try using DNS over HTTPS using CloudFlare to eliminate the ability for AT&T to see what you're doing. But that's advanced stuff.

Why can't I use my Obama Phone with Verizon?

Motorola Moto G7

Episode 1597

John from Santa Barbara, CA

John got an "Obama Phone" with AirVoice Wireless. When he got a new Motorola Moto Phone that was unlocked, it says it uses GSM or LTE. And AirVoice Wireless only uses Verizon. Can he use the phone? Leo says that Verizon is CDMA, so a GSM phone won't work. But AirVoice also says they're an AT&T carrier. From the chatroom - input the APN settings listed here and it needs to be a phone that works with AT&T. https://apn.gishan.net/en/apn/airvoice/motorola-moto-g-4g-2nd-gen

AT&T Launches 5G, but Good Luck Trying to Use it

AT&T

Episode 1582

AT&T has launched its 5G service in 17 cities around the country, but Rich says good luck trying to use it. First, you can't find a map of 5G coverage to see where it's available, plus you need a $500 hotspot device to use it if you do. Also, 5G doesn't travel very far, requiring even more towers.

Meanwhile, Verizon has launched in Chicago and Minneapolis for everyone, but in very small areas. Rich says that while 5G is the future, it's just not the future now. 

Top Tech Stories of 2018

Facebook

Episode 1552

1. Facebook had a terrible year, starting with leaked information to Cambridge Analytica of up to 87 million users. It lost 19% value, up to $100 billion, the biggest loss in the history of the stock market. Mark Zuckerberg lost $40 billion personally. And there was congressional investivations. All told, Facebook had 21 scandals centered around privacy violations. It was as bad a year as Facebook could get.

2. Apple lost 20% of its value. It went from being the first trillion dollar company to no longer holding that title.

Why doesn't my phone support Wi-Fi calling?

OnePlus 6

Episode 1548

Milan from Ontario, CA

Milan has a OnePlus 6, but his carrier, AT&T, doesn't support voice-over Wi-Fi with it. Leo suggests a microcell, or femtocell, and tell them he's moving to another carrier if they don't give it to him. Another option is to use an app like WhatsApp or Google Voice to do it. According to the chatroom, it has to be an AT&T branded OS to support that feature.

Here's a list of the phones AT&T supports with that feature. (Thanks ScooterX)

Can I just put my SIM into my new Samsung Galaxy S9?

Samsung Galaxy S9

Episode 1545

Patrick from California

Patrick bought a Samsung Galaxy S9 at Best Buy for Black Friday. Can he just drop his SIM card in or does he have to get it activated? Leo says he should just be able to drop his existing SIM into it and get started. Leo says that the FCC doesn't like carrier locks if the carrier isn't subsidizing the phone. So all he'll have to do is call the carrier and ask them to unlock it, if he needs to. But if he's a Verizon customer, it shouldn't be locked at all, and since he's not switching carriers, it should work if it uses the same SIM.

How can I get AT&T to address my overages?

AT&T

Episode 1533

Craig from Houston, TX

Craig has been stunned by overages in the hundreds of dollars. Leo says it's time to get a new provider. Every provider has either an unlimited plan or a cheap charge for another GB or two of access. He should set his photo apps to not download unless he is connected to WiFi. But he can't get satisfaction from AT&T about the overages. Leo says he can shame them by tweeting out his complaints. They have a social media department that pays attention to that. He can also write the CEO. He has an office for complaints. His name is Randal Stevenson.

Judge Approves AT&T/Time Warner Merger, Opening the Floodgates

AT&T Logo

Episode 1498

A federal judge approved the merger of Time Warner and AT&T this week, opening the floodgates for even more large mega corporate mergers. Comcast moved almost instantly to provide a massive bid on 21st Century Fox, outbidding Disney by over 15%, setting off a huge bidding war. Leo says that the judge got it wrong and this represents a serious problem for consumers, even though customers like it because it saves them money in the short run.

Why do I have hundreds of strange contacts on my phone?

Samsung Galaxy S9

Episode 1490

Bob from San Jose, CA

Bob bought a Samsung Galaxy S9 and he thinks it's too large for his hand. Leo says that larger phones are the future, as people prefer a larger screen to hand comfort. Bob also has hundreds of contacts on his phone that aren't his after he synced it. Leo says it's possible that AT&T or Samsung sold Bob a phone that was returned and hadn't wiped it before doing so. But if they sealed it up to make it look new, that's against the law.