AT&T stores allegedly instructed to sell 'anything but iPhones'

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AT&T reportedly not an iPhone fan

The "which is better" war between Apple and Android may have been getting some one-sided help from AT&T stores, if a recent report gathered by BGR is true.

The report, which cites anonymous regional AT&T store managers for the cellular carrier, alleges the managers instructed employees to steer customers interested in iPhones first towards Android and Windows smartphones.

These same sources, culled from multiple unnamed AT&T stores, also state employees are no longer allowed to purchase the iPhone as their company phone.

Instead, AT&T store employees must choose between an Android or Windows device.

It's all in the numbers

While the employees may have been helping customers make "informed decisions," the iPhone's numbers at AT&T suffered.

One store manager said that prior to this reported directive, iPhone sales made up nearly 80 percent of all smartphone sales at the manager's store.

Since the directive was put in place, the store manager said iPhone sales dropped to between 50 percent - 60 percent of all smartphone activations at his location.

AT&T's second quarter sales numbers for fiscal year 2012 revealed the 3.7 million iPhones activated by the carrier accounted for 72 percent of all smartphone sales.

Though it sounds like an impressive number, iPhone sales have only grown 3 percent from the same period a year ago.

TechRadar contacted AT&T and received this statement from one of their spokespersons:

"The idea that we would steer any customer away from a particular device couldn't be more far fetched. Our reps do what it takes to align customer needs with the best device for them.

"iPhone remains one of our most popular devices, which doesn't happen by steering people away from it. Our reps are encouraged to try all devices so they are more knowledgeable on our industry-leading smartphone lineup."

The iPhone 5's purportedly immanent arrival may have something to do with the small sales growth.