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iPhone will get MMS September 25

AT&T announced that multimedia messaging will finally come to the iPhone on September 25. The carrier also said it appreciates the patience of its customers (it better).

MMS finally arrives on the iPhone. Corinne Schulze/CNET

Congratulations, iPhone, you can finally join the cell phone family. AT&T announced Thursday that the long-awaited multimedia messaging would arrive on Apple's device in the United States starting September 25. The iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G will support the service, but owners of the original iPhone will miss out since that handset lacks the proper radio.

In its brief statement, AT&T offered few reasons why it's taken so long to get such a basic cell phone feature. It only said MMS "required us to work on our network MMS architecture to carry the expected record volumes of MMS traffic and ensure an excellent experience from Day One."

The carrier also said it appreciates the patience of its customers (it better) and that it knows that many iPhone customers are "eager" (that's putting it mildly) for the MMS rollout. Other iPhone carriers around the world have offered MMS since the 3.0 update went live earlier this year.

On the magic day, you'll need a software update before you can send your first photo to another phone number. As we reported last month, some users have seen the MMS commands on their iPhone after the most recent software update, but they've been unable to use them.

And in case anyone is keeping score, September 25 is three days after autumn officially begins on September 22. At Apple's WWDC in June, a company exec said MMS would come later in the summer. And one more thing: we're still waiting for that promised tethering support.