I am not an AT&T user. But I am on a national landline carrier, I do live in rural America, and I was switched to a DSL voip phone. I can give you a general idea of how it works. Mine is an Ag state with many 1000 acre farms in its counties. My town is the largest at about 2500 residents. I live roughly 4-6 blocks from the CO/plant "as the crow flies"; add 4 if you follow a street map.
Before Fiber or DSL or ??? signal came from AT&T to the local carrier and then into the local office. I had a reliable POTS phone and a slower internet, but it was an acceptable speed and reliable. Now I do not have either. I have a mess
Now the DSL signal comes over copper to a converter box across the street where the DSL is converted to Analog. They can legally scam FCC and the state utility commission into believing I have a POTS line. I may have a copper line, but I do NOT have a POTS phone.
But I do have a faster internet, and a phone less reliable than my cat (10/.512). Everyday the internet needs to be reminded where to find my modem or the phone breaks. The problem is the uplink is too slow to support any Voip or a telco branded DSL phone, and they know it.
The only fix in an upgrade in the local office. Telco will not do this because they DO NOT WANT RURAL CUSTOMERS and they're trying to kid the sock puppets in Washington.
The question is whether or not they can fill enough pockets to change the law --when the people who were hired to protect the public should be looking at Sherman, and certainly at the principle of "DO NO HARM".
Don't buy smoke and mirrors. Where I live you will not get a crystal clear voice and no dropped calls unless you have a POTS line. One thing for your sure you will never satisfactorily offer DSL on 256 or 512 kilobits. You need 1.5-2.0 Mbps for quality and reliability. It is a fact.
If you voluntarily give up your POTS phone you will NOT get it back.
Mac: No windows, No Gates, Apple inside