October 20, 2011 at 13:02 PM EDT
Thursday Apple Rumors — AT&T’s iPhone Business Still Booming
iPhones lose a little ground but still were activated more than any handheld for AT&T over the previous quarter.

daily apple rumors AAPLHere are your daily Apple rumors and news items for Thursday:

AT&T’s iPhone Business Stays Strong: It seems silly now that investors were so worried that Verizon‘s (NYSE:VZ) support of the iPhone would spell the end of AT&T‘s (NYSE:T) iPhone business back at the beginning of 2011. AT&T activated more than 1 million iPhone 4Ses in the past week, according to a Thursday report at Apple Insider. That’s in addition to the company’s total 2.7 million iPhone activations over the previous quarter. Apple‘s (NASDAQ:AAPL) device remained the leading handheld for AT&T’s entire mobile operation, but total activations fell over the previous quarter when AT&T activated 3.6 million iPhones. (It’s likely the dip was caused by consumers waiting for the new iPhone to release in October.) Still trying to push “4G” service on a consumer base that doesn’t know what 4G means, AT&T in a press release credited its iPhone 4S success to claiming to be the only carrier to offer the new model “with 4G speeds.”

Regional Mobile Provider Supports iPhone 4S: That faint sound you could hear murmuring between Apple reporting earnings Wednesday and AT&T reporting earnings Thursday was the sound of T-Mobile USA crying. While the country’s fourth-place telecom was passed over as an official supporter for Apple’s latest iPhone, C Spire was not. Who is C Spire? C Spire, formerly Cellular South, is a regional telecom serving less than 1 million subscribers in and around Mississippi. According to a Wednesday report at CNN, Apple made C-Spire the United States’ fourth official iPhone 4S carrier this week. Yankee Group analyst Tole Hart believes Apple made the decision to gain iPhone users in rural communities that previously have had greater access to Android phones on regional networks.

Samsung Outsold iPhone in Third Quarter: Apple shipped just more than 17 million iPhones during the third quarter, disappointing Wall Street analysts that were expecting between 18 million and 21 million units sold for the period. One smartphone manufacturer did post those numbers, though, according to a Wednesday report in The Wall Street Journal. A “person familiar with the situation” told the WSJ that Samsung (PINK:SSNLF) shipped 20 million smartphones during the quarter that ended in September. Samsung also beat out Nokia (NYSE:NOK) to become the second-leading smartphone manufacturer (in terms of revenue), trailing Apple, in the world.

As of this writing, Anthony John Agnello did not own a position in any of the stocks named here. Follow him on Twitter at @ajohnagnello and become a fan of InvestorPlace on Facebook.

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