“American Idol” has lost one of its longtime sponsors. Deadline.com reports that the Fox singing competition is losing its deal with AT&T, which had sponsored the AT&T voting numbers read by Ryan Seacrest after each performance.
AT&T joined the Fox show in its second season, but won’t be back for its 13th season, the story notes. Ford and Coca-Cola, which have sponsored the show since the beginning, will return.
"A lot has changed since ‘Idol’ launched in 2002," the story reports. "Phoning and texting, once the primary way of audience voting, have been pushed out by online voting, which ‘Idol’ has been doing for the last couple of seasons. It is unclear whether there will be another sponsor replacing AT&T, though the show does not necessarily need one."