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3G/HSPA

AT&T Speeds Up 80% of Its 3G Network

AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) is gearing up to battle Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S), T-Mobile US Inc. , and Verizon Wireless in their so-called "4G" marketing efforts with a speed upgrade to its 3G network.

Speaking at the Sencha Conference in San Francisco, AT&T CTO John Donovan said that 80 percent of the carrier's 3G network has been upgraded to the faster high-speed packet access plus (HSPA+) specification, according to IDG . The operator wants to cover 250 million people with the technology by the end of 2010.

Why this matters
The HSPA+ upgrade gives AT&T a 3G network with improved speeds to counter major rival Verizon's Long Term Evolution (LTE) launch late this year in 38 markets. T-Mobile has also been nipping at AT&T's heels with a HSPA+ upgrade of its own that is expected to cover 200 million by the end of 2010. Sprint, meanwhile, has been launching its dual-mode 3G and WiMax service in major markets like NYC recently.

But how fast is it?
AT&T had initially said that it would roll out a 14.4 Mbit/s HSPA upgrade to its network. Rival T-Mobile went for a HSPA+ upgrade that tops out at 21 Mbit/s. AT&T recently told PC Mag that it is using the same technology as T-Mobile and its network will be faster than 14.4 Mbit/s but didn't reveal actual peak speeds.

See More
Read more on HSPA+ below:

  • The Battle of FauxG
  • T-Mobile Launches '4G' Assault
  • 4G World: Faster 3G in US – Charting HSPA+
  • 4G World: AT&T to Go to 21Mbit/s HSPA+ in 2011?
  • AT&T Unveils LTE & HSPA+ USB Modems

    — Dan Jones, Site Editor, Light Reading Mobile

  • Pete Baldwin 12/5/2012 | 4:18:14 PM
    re: AT&T Speeds Up 80% of Its 3G Network

    This still doesn't solve the signaling problem.


    That's not to say AT&T is wasting its time.  As Dan points out, it's got to keep up on the speed front. Speed is important.


    But I think a lot of users might equate a faster network to better data sessions and fewer dropped calls, and they'll be disappointed.

    spc_markl 12/5/2012 | 4:18:14 PM
    re: AT&T Speeds Up 80% of Its 3G Network

    Craig,


    There will certainly be a sigh of relief by the networking people at AT&T once Verizon Wireless grabs a good number of iPhone customers.


    Mark Lutkowitz, Telecom Pragmatics

    Pete Baldwin 12/5/2012 | 4:18:13 PM
    re: AT&T Speeds Up 80% of Its 3G Network

    Pretty funny. Yes, I'm sure AT&T will be thrilled.

    spc_markl 12/5/2012 | 4:18:07 PM
    re: AT&T Speeds Up 80% of Its 3G Network

    The only problem is AT&T is not exactly in a rush to go to LTE in a big way.


    Mark

    joset01 12/5/2012 | 4:18:07 PM
    re: AT&T Speeds Up 80% of Its 3G Network

    They get more signalling 'space' when they move to LTE.

    EdG0000 12/5/2012 | 4:18:00 PM
    re: AT&T Speeds Up 80% of Its 3G Network Faster doesn't matter when you have to turn -á3G off and revert to Edge to get signal in the first place in places like the Bay Area. Come on! -áLets just get 3G working in major metros before worrying about making it faster. -á

    Sent from my iPhone 3GS from the middle of downtown San Fran using Edge.
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