November 14, 2011
AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) said Monday that it will add six new Long Term Evolution (LTE) markets this Sunday, Nov. 20, along with a new 4G Galaxy tablet from Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (Korea: SEC)
The skinny, Android-based Galaxy 8.9 -- AT&T's second LTE tablet -- will cost $479 with a two-year contract. To sweeten the deal, AT&T is offering, until Jan. 7, a free Samsung Galaxy S II Skyrocket or Samsung Galaxy S II smartphone with the device. Why this matters
This means AT&T will make its target of deploying LTE in 15 markets in 2011. The operator says it hopes to cover 70 million people with LTE by year's end.
AT&T's LTE is, or will be, available in Athens, Ga.; Atlanta; Baltimore; Boston; Charlotte, N.C.; Chicago; Dallas/Fort Worth; Houston; Indianapolis; Kansas City; Las Vegas; Oklahoma City; San Antonio, San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Washington, D.C. come Sunday.
AT&T's LTE footprint is much smaller than Verizon Wireless 's 4G service, which will be in 178 towns and cities by Nov. 17. AT&T, of course, notes that it offers High-Speed Packet Access-Plus (HSPA+) service as a fallback that offers "4G speeds" in areas supported with "enhanced backhaul."
Expect to see more competition on smartphones, tablets and data pricing as service providers look to figure out what LTE's niche is in the U.S. in 2012.
Read up on AT&T's LTE deployment:
AT&T Readies Its First LTE Phones
AT&T's First LTE Tab Is for Big Spenders
AT&T LTE Test-Drive Results Revealed
AT&T LTE Launch Set for Sunday
AT&T/T-Mobile: Nationwide LTE Within 6 Years
AT&T Offers $700 HTC LTE Tablet
LiTE Bites: LightSquared's 12 & AT&T in Chicago
— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile
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