AT&T Corporation History

One AT&T Way
Bedminster, New Jersey 07921
Telephone: (908) 221-2000
Fax: (908) 532-1675
Public Company
Incorporated: 1885 as American Telephone and Telegr

Telephone: (908) 221-2000
Fax: (908) 532-1675

Public Company
Incorporated: 1885 as American Telephone and Telegraph Company
Employees: 61,600
Sales: $34.52 billion (2003)
Stock Exchanges: New York
Ticker Symbol: T
NAIC: 517110 Wired Telecommunications Carriers; 334111 Electronic Computer Manufacturing; 334210 Telephone Apparatus Manufacturing; 515210 Cable and Other Subscription Programming; 522298 All Other Non-Depository Credit Intermediation; 522320 Financial Transactions Processing, Reserve, and Clearing House

Company Perspectives:

It takes the right technology, the right people, and a bold vision to be the "The World's Networking Company." For more than 125 years, AT&T has been known for unparalleled quality and reliability in communications. Backed by the research and development capabilities of AT&T Labs, our commitment to innovation has made us a global leader in local, long distance, Internet, and transaction-based voice and data services.

Key Dates:

The American Telephone and Telegraph Company (AT&T) is formed, establishing the first national telephone network.
The first coin-operated pay phone is installed in Hartford, Connecticut.
AT&T begins reducing its prices to wrest control away from independent telephone companies.
AT&T establishes WEAF in New York City, marking its entry in the commercial radio business.
Microwave radio becomes the technological basis of long-distance telephone calls.
Telstar, the first AT&T satellite, is launched.
Plans for the breakup of AT&T are approved, leading to the creation of independent, regional telephone companies and freeing AT&T to enter non-telecommunications businesses.
AT&T is organized into two divisions, AT&T Communications and AT&T Technologies.
AT&T acquires NCR Corporation, a computer maker, in a $7.4 billion transaction.
AT&T enters the cellular telephone business with the $12.8 billion acquisition of McCaw Cellular Communications.
AT&T announces it is splitting into three companies, AT&T Corporation, Lucent Technologies, and NCR Corporation.
AT&T acquires cable television giant, Tele-Communications Inc., in a $53.5 billion deal.
AT&T outbids Comcast and Microsoft to acquire MediaOne Inc., making the company the nation's largest operator of cable television.
Comcast acquires AT&T Broadband for $72 billion.
AT&T Wireless is sold for $41 billion to Cingular Wireless.

Company History:

Further Reading:

  • Anderson, Julia, "Clark County, Wash., AT&T Broadband Subscribers to Become Customers of Comcast," Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News, December 5, 2002.
  • "AT&T: Breaking up Is Still Hard to Do," Business Week, November 6, 2000, p. 173.
  • Bonamici, Kate, "Bells and Whistles," Fortune, April 19, 2004, p. 146.
  • Brooks, John, Telephone: The First Hundred Years, New York: Harper and Row, 1976.
  • Evans, David S., ed., Breaking Up Bell: Essays on Industrial Organization and Regulation, New York: Elsevier Science Publishing Co., 1983.
  • Faletra, Robert, "What Is AT&T Thinking with Its Dramatic Shift in Channels," Computer Reseller News, October 18, 2004, p. 94.
  • Finneran, Michael, "The AT&T Breakup: A New Model for a Global Telecom Colossus," Business Communications Review, November 1995, pp. 78-9.
  • Goldblatt, Henry, "AT&T Finally Has an Operator," Fortune, February 16, 1998, pp. 79-80.
  • Greenfield, Karl Taro, "Ma Everything!," Time, May 17, 1999, pp. 58-60.
  • Greenwald, John, "AT&T's Power Shake," Time, July 6, 1998, pp. 76-8.
  • Howe, Peter J., "AT&T Chairman Addresses Boston Audience on Future of Company," Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News, November 8, 2000.
  • Kirkpatrick, David, "Could AT&T Rule the World?," Fortune, May 17, 1993, p. 54.
  • ------, "AT&T Has the Plan," Fortune, October 16, 1995, pp. 84-6.
  • Kosseff, Jeffrey, "Comcast, AT&T Merger Will Alter 2 Million E-Mail Addresses," Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News, December 4, 2002.
  • Kupfer, Andrew, "AT&T's $12 Billion Cellular Dream," Fortune, December 12, 1994, p. 100.
  • ------, "AT&T: Ready to Run, Nowhere to Hide," Fortune, April 29, 1996, pp. 116-18.
  • ------, "AT&T Gets Lucky," Fortune, November 9, 1998, pp. 108-10.
  • Loomis, Carol J., "AT&T Has No Clothes," Fortune, February 5, 1996, pp. 78-80.
  • Mehta, Stephanie N., "Great Balls of Fire," Fortune, November 13, 2000, p. 44.
  • ------, "The New AT&T: Not Quite Its Old Self," Fortune, July 12, 2004, p. 34.
  • McCarroll, Thomas, "How AT&T Plans to Reach out and Touch Everyone," Time, July 5, 1993, p. 44.
  • Scheisel, Seth, "AT&T Conjures up Its Vision for Cable, But Can It Deliver?," New York Times, May 7, 1999, p. 1C.
  • Sims, Calvin, "AT&T's New Call to Arms," New York Times, January 22, 1989.
  • Slutsker, Gary, "The Tortoise and the Hare," Forbes, February 1, 1993, p. 66.
  • Snyder, Beth, "AT&T Joins Wave of Marketers Hiding IDs Behind New Brands: Lucky Dog Dial-Around Service Aims for Value-Conscious Crowd," Advertising Age, November 2, 1998, p. 17.
  • Trager, Louis, "AT&T Sticks to Consumer Path," Interactive Week Online, May 3, 1999.
  • Villano, Matt, "Who Ya Gonna Call?," Computer Reseller News, November 1, 2004, p. 80.
  • Waserman, Todd, "AT&T: We're All About Business Now," Brandweek, August 9, 2004, p. 4.

Source: International Directory of Company Histories, Vol.68. St. James Press, 2005.