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AT&T Squabbles With AT&T Wireless Over Brand

August 9, 2004 (2:37 p.m. EST)

AT&T has fired a shot across the bow of its former cell phone unit -- AT&T Wireless -- in the form of a notification stating that it believes the wireless firm has violated their brand-licensing agreement concerning customer-care performance levels.

The wireless company stated in a SEC filing that it is acting to remedy any potential difficulties with AT&T, according to The Wall Street Journal.

AT&T Wireless is on track to be formally acquired in a few months by Cingular Wireless, which is jointly owned by former regional Bell operating companies (RBOCs) BellSouth Corp. and SBC Communications. AT&T has been in bitter confrontation in recent years with the RBOCs over the fees the RBOCs charge AT&T to connect to their landline networks.

The use of the AT&T brand has yet to be determined by the parties of the Cingular acquisition. AT&T has already indicated it needs a cell phone offering to help fill out its bundle of telecommunications service offerings.