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AT&T Invites Wireless Customers to Pick Up Their Cell Phones and Exercise Their Right to Vote for the Next "American Idol"


As Fans Enjoy the First Week of Voting, AT&T Announces the Return of Messaging-Based Offerings Including a New Messaging Sweepstakes

Atlanta, Georgia, February 21, 2007, Now that the “American Idol” auditioners have taken their last bow, the Top 24 are singing their hearts out in front of an American television-viewing — and voting — audience.

Cingular, now the new AT&T, is again making it easy for its customers to use their cell phones to stay plugged in to America’s No. 1 television show through a host of messaging–based offerings including Text Voting, Vote Reminder, Idol Trivia and a new messaging sweepstakes where the grand-prize winner will have a chance to win up to $1,000,000.

“As in past seasons, messaging is the foundation of our ’Idol’-themed wireless offerings, and our customers who are fans of the show continue to embrace these services so they can stay connected to all of the excitement of ’American Idol,’” said Jim Ryan, vice president-consumer data services, AT&T. “We are thrilled to once again deliver an innovative suite of messaging-based programs to keep our ’Idol’ fans engaged with the show and, of course, make it simple and convenient for them to wirelessly text their votes to help ultimately determine the winner.”

Since “American Idol” debuted four weeks ago to a record audience of 37.3 million viewers, AT&T wireless customers have been able to enjoy video and ringtone content from the audition shows on their cell phones. Now with the Top 24 contestants determined, it’s time to expand the content offerings. Teaming with VeriSign, Inc. (Nasdaq: VRSN), the leading provider of intelligent infrastructure for the networked world, the new AT&T is once again offering a host of exciting messaging-based interactive services this season, which include:

* Text Voting — Text the word “VOTE,” then send it to your “Idol’s” number. You can vote for as many contestants as you want, as often as you like, during the voting window after each show.
* Vote Reminder — To receive text messages listing all the “Idols” and their codes on your wireless phone each week, just text AI to short code 3003.
* Idol Trivia — To sign up for weekly “American Idol” trivia, text AI to short code 5005.
* Idol TXT Chats — Once it’s down to the Top 12, AT&T wireless customers will have the opportunity to chat each week with the “Idol” contestant who was eliminated from the previous night’s show. Fans will post questions, as part of a group chat, to the contestant during a designated time and then will receive a text message with the contestant’s response. To sign up, text the word “YES” to 7007.

A chance to win a trip to the finale plus up to $1,000,000
AT&T is giving “Idol” fans a million reasons to text this season. One lucky fan of the show will have a chance to win up to $1,000,000. Entry into the sweepstakes is easy; simply text the word “IDOL” to 4004. After that, every text message, multimedia message and/or instant message sent before May 4, 2007, counts as an entry into the sweepstakes. The winner of the sweepstakes will be randomly selected from all the entries received, and he or she will win a trip for two to the “American Idol” season finale in Los Angeles where they will have a chance to win a great cash prize. Want to know more? Visit for all the details.

Rise in Idol-Related Texting
Since a text-messaging component was first introduced on “American Idol” Season 2 by AT&T, there has been a steady increase in overall “American Idol”-related text messages sent each season. In anticipation of another stellar messaging season, AT&T’s wireless network has worked to triple its network capacity by building a dedicated high-volume messaging complex.

* “American Idol” Season 2: The campaign generated 7.5 million text messages in its debut season.
* “American Idol” Season 3: A total of 13.5 million text messages were sent, almost doubling the results of the previous season.
* “American Idol” Season 4: With the merger with AT&T Wireless complete, Cingular more than tripled the number of “American Idol” related text messages, with 41.5 million sent throughout the season.
* “American Idol” Season 5: Last season, more than 64.5 million text messages were sent — breaking last year’s record.

Text Voting Is As Easy As 1, 2, 3!
If you’re an “American Idol” fan but you’ve never picked up your new AT&T wireless phone to vote, you just need to follow these three simple steps:

1. On your AT&T wireless phone, select Menu, and start a new message from the Text Messaging option.
2. Type in the word “VOTE;” then select Options and Send.
3. Enter the four-digit number of the contestant(s) for whom you want to vote, then select OK. (Contestant numbers are listed during each voting show.)

Two easy ways to text message:

* Pay as you go (automatically included with your service — 15 cents a message).
* Select a messaging package for as low as $4.99 a month. Messaging packages include text, picture, video and instant messages.

Most AT&T wireless phones support text-messaging. Have an older phone and are not sure whether it is enabled for text-messaging? Visit, or dial 611 from your wireless phone to find out whether your phone is compatible.

Visit for more details on the new AT&T’s Idol related content and features this season, and watch “American Idol,” Tuesdays and Wednesdays on FOX!

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About AT&T
AT&T Inc. is a premier communications holding company in the United States and around the world, with operating subsidiaries providing services under the AT&T brand. AT&T is the recognized world leader in providing IP-based communications services to businesses and the U.S. leader in providing wireless, high speed Internet access, local and long distance voice, and directory publishing and advertising through its Yellow Pages and YELLOWPAGES.COM organizations. As part of its three-screen integration strategy, AT&T is expanding video entertainment offerings to include such next-generation television services as AT&T U-verseSM TV. Additional information about AT&T Inc. and the products and services provided by AT&T subsidiaries and affiliates is available at

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