This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

AT&T Customer Service: From the Outhouse to the Penthouse

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- I don't consider myself old, but I often find myself talking about the past in the same way that "boring older people" did when I was younger.

Take AT&T (T - Get Report), for example.

I remember when "Ma Bell" was the only game in town. There were no cellphones. You had to pay more if you wanted touch-tone buttons instead of a rotary dial. Long distance wasn't included as part of any plan, and it was expensive.

But did you know AT&T company was recently awarded the top spot in J.D. Power customer satisfaction for 2013?

For those who don't remember, try to imagine a customer service mix between the local Department of Motor Vehicles and Charter Communications (CHTR).

After 30 years of adjusting to the realities of a competitive free market, Ma Bell reached the top of customer service. Investors and customers should anticipate the C-suite continuing to focus on the customer experience.

T Free Cash Flow TTM Chart T Free Cash Flow TTM data by YCharts

In the last 12 years, AT&T transitioned from a landline telco offering cellphone service into a cellphone provider offering U-verse. U-verse is a blended service of high-speed Internet and TV.

Although I am unable to subscribe to U-verse at my home (I can get DSL.), most locations that are able to subscribe to U-verse are also able to select a similar competing offering from another such as Charter, Comcast (CMCSA), Time Warner Cable (TWC) and Verizon Communications (VZ - Get Report).

Regardless of the competitive landscape, AT&T is executing well. Wireless revenue increased 5.7% last quarter compared to the same period last year. Wireless data revenue increased nearly 20%, and the previously mentioned U-Verse service reached a new mile-stone of 5 million active subscribers.

AT&T's valuation is a little rich when examined through the rearview mirror, but if we look at estimated earnings, this wireless carrier becomes downright cheap. The forward price-to-earnings ratio is only 13.3, and the amount of debt in relation to cash flow, earnings, and cash on hand also makes AT&T attractive.

Verizon and Sprint (S), the other two of the three biggest carriers, failed to encroach on AT&T's market share nearly as much as some predicted when Apple (AAPL) discontinued the exclusive deal with AT&T and started offering iPhones to others.
1 of 2

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
S $4.52 -0.88%
T $35.77 -0.97%
VZ $46.77 -1.78%
AAPL $124.53 -1.75%
FB $85.80 -2.51%

Markets

DOW 17,596.35 -350.33 -1.95%
S&P 500 2,057.64 -43.85 -2.09%
NASDAQ 4,958.4680 -122.0370 -2.40%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs