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AT&T activates 3.2 million iPhones in quarter

Telecom giant posts a better-than-expected third quarter, with wireless powering sales and the iPhone marking its largest quarterly activation total to date.

AT&T's bet on the iPhone continues to work well. The company reported Thursday a better-than-expected third quarter with 3.2 million iPhone activations--the largest quarterly activation total to date.

The telecom giant had net income of $3.2 billion, or 54 cents a share. Revenue came in at $30.9 billion, down from $31.3 billion a year ago. Wall Street was expecting earnings of 50 cents a share.

If you're an AT&T customer, you may be more interested in the update on its infrastructure improvements. The company said dropped calls in September declined by 12 percent, compared with a year ago.

Total churn for the quarter was 1.43 percent, down from 1.69 percent a year ago.

As usual, AT&T was powered by its wireless unit, which represents 44 percent of total sales. Wireless data revenue was $3.6 billion, up 33.6 percent from a year ago.

Read more of "AT&T cuts churn rate; Activates 3.2 million iPhones; Touts network upgrades" at ZDNet's Between the Lines.