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Apple created the device during a secretive and unprecedented collaboration with Cingular Wireless, now part of AT&T. The development cost of the collaboration was estimated to have been $150 million  over a thirty-month period.
In 2004, Vodafone made an unsuccessful bid for the entirety of AT&T Wireless; however, Cingular Wireless, at the time a joint venture of SBC Communications and BellSouth (both now part of AT&T Inc.), ultimately outbid Vodafone and took control of AT&T Wireless (the combined wireless carrier is now AT&T Mobility).
AT&T Mobility, along with most other service providers, charges texters 20 cents per message if they do not have a messaging plan or if they have exceeded their allotted number of texts. Given that an SMS message is at most 160 bytes in size, this cost scales to a cost of $1,310  per megabyte sent via text message.
In 2005, RadioShack parted with Verizon for a 10-year agreement with Cingular (later AT&T) and renegotiated its 11-year agreement with Sprint. In July 2011, RadioShack ended its wireless partnership with T-Mobile, replacing it with the "Verizon Wireless Store" within a store.