AT&T on Monday added a Push-to-Talk application to the iPhone for its corporate customers, replicating a feature of the Nextel network.
AT&T Enhanced Push-to-Talk (EPTT) is now available to AT&T business customers through a new app available for iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S.
Such a feature is available on some non-Nextel phones from Sprint, Verizon and AT&T, but this is the first time it's available on the iPhone in the U.S.
In addition, AT&T Enhanced Push-to-Talk can now be used over Wi-Fi, giving the company's U.S.-based customers improved in-building coverage and access to the service via compatible Wi-Fi networks.
AT&T claims that its Enhanced Push-to-Talk for iPhone include solution offers larger contact lists and talk groups than competitive push-to-talk solutions. Users can also combine push-to-talk services and mobile applications, with help available from AT&T's team of mobility consulting. In addition, a supervisory override function allows supervisors to communicate important time sensitive messages to their team.
Seperately, AT&T on Sunday said it is extending from 20 months to 24 months the time it takes for customers on contract-based plans to earn a fully subsidized upgrade to a new phone.
AT&T.'s new policy applies to any customer whose contract expires in March 2014 or later.
Extending the time between phone upgrades saves the phone companies money, since they subsidize each new phone by hundreds of dollars to make it available to customers for about $200.