Mark the Spot: iPhone app logs poor AT&T coverage

A new AT&T app makes it easy to report dropped calls and spotty service – does it play into Verizon's hand?

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    No problems here: Dropped call? The "Mark the Spot" app can submit your current location to AT&T.
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Dropped call? Spotty service? There's an, um ... app for that.

In a move that seems to play right into the hands of its rivals, AT&T on Monday released an application to the iPhone's store that lets users report sub-par network performance.

Available here [iTunes link], "Mark the Spot" brings a much-needed tattletale function to the at-times woefully spotty service of AT&T.

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Upon launching the app, users are reminded not to use it while driving, and then are presented with a menu of maladies where iPhone users can pick their poison. Once they've chosen between dropped call, failed call, no coverage, data failure, and poor data quality, users can choose a frequency: once, sometimes, often, and always.

Since the app is location-aware (it asks if you want to tap into the phone's GPS services) it will record its current location. Or, users can use a map to pinpoint the spot of the offending outage – you know, because if you're in a dead zone, you can't exactly tell AT&T at that moment.

The app then sends the report to AT&T's operations team, who, looking at aggregated data, will "utilize this feedback to optimize and enhance the network," and send back a confirmation text message, according to the app's FAQ.

This writer's prediction: sports stadiums, all of Brooklyn, and all of the major tech conferences will become Mark the Spot hot zones.

One other tidbit the app notes: "Multiple submissions at the same time from the same user do not receive higher weighting." Sorry, there's no staying up all night, lobbying AT&T to install a tower in your neighbor's yard.

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How's your cell phone service? Used Mark the Spot? Leave a comment or tell us about it on Twitter.

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