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Fall Into 4G: AT&T Adds LTE Markets

Dan Jones
10/28/2013
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AT&T is now up to 441 live markets with LTE, adding four more areas with 4G.

The new markets are:

  • The Big Island, Hawaii
  • Kankakee-Bradley, Ill.
  • Laconia, N.H.
  • Gaffney, S.C.

Here's where AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) now stands with LTE as compared with other US rivals:

Table 1: 4G LTE Markets in the US

Operator 4G technology Number of markets Average download speeds
AT&T LTE (Also markets HSPA+ as 4G) 437 18.6 Mbit/s
Cricket (Leap Wireless) LTE 11 3-15 times faster than Leap's 3G
C-Spire LTE 40 markets up, 3 more coming soon Data speeds up to 10 times faster
MetroPCS LTE 30 markets 2-15 Mbit/s (depending on market)
Sprint LTE & WiMax 185 LTE, 71 WiMax 10.3 Mbit/s
T-Mobile LTE (Also markets HSPA+ as “4G”) 223 markets 25 Mbit/s (on unloaded network)
U.S. Cellular LTE 92 markets Up to 10 times faster than 3G
Verizon Wireless LTE 500+ markets 14.3 Mbit/s
Sources: Carrier data, Light Reading, OpenSignal, RootMetrics

The network watchers at OpenSignal recently rated the fastest 4G LTE networks in the largest cities in the US:

Table 2: How the LTE Networks Perform

City Avg. Download Speed Best Network
New York 6.7 Mbit/s T-Mobile
Los Angeles 7.5 Mbit/s AT&T
Chicago 6.6 Mbit/s AT&T
Houston 7.3 Mbit/s T-Mobile
Philadelphia 5.5 Mbit/s Verizon
Phoenix 9.7 Mbit/s T-Mobile
Dallas 8.6 Mbit/s T-Mobile
San Diego 9.6 Mbit/s T-Mobile
San Jose 10.8 Mbit/s T-Mobile
San Antonio 6.6 Mbit/s Verizon
Source: OpenSignal

Related posts:

— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading

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DanJones
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DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/30/2013 | 11:04:07 AM
PoPs: The question 2
AT&T covers nearly 250M PoPs now.
DanJones
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DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/29/2013 | 10:01:31 AM
Re: 2x20MHz VolTE etc.
Yeah, it seems to me the challenge they all face now is filling out handoff and coverage enough so that they can move to VoLTE. Everything I've seen so far suggests that could be a rocky path but we're still in the early stages really.
lanbrown
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lanbrown,
User Rank: Light Sabre
10/28/2013 | 9:18:23 PM
Re: 2x20MHz
That is why I said when Verizon first started their LTE upgrade that they had to go to LTE and fast.  Their 3G network was slow as EVDO just was not going to cut it whereas AT&T had 7.2Mbps or higher on their 3G network.  Future 3G upgrades would allow faster speeds; Verizon couldn't do 3G upgrades.  AT&T could afford to wait and let Verizon be the beta tester for LTE.
DanJones
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DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/28/2013 | 5:10:08 PM
Re: 2x20MHz
Which ones? The OpenSignal data? I can ask them.
Drymarchon7
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Drymarchon7,
User Rank: Light Beer
10/28/2013 | 3:59:12 PM
Re: 2x20MHz
What I would be interested in is knowing what party conducted the drive test, what the routes look like, and what devices were utilized to yield these maket downlink data rates just out of curiosity
DanJones
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DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/28/2013 | 3:42:13 PM
Re: 2x20MHz
Well, we don't really know for dead sure when any of the US carriers will be ready to launch VoLTE. I could see even the vague stated timelines slipping.

Verizon is definitely ahead on 2x20MHz though.
Sarah Thomas
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Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
10/28/2013 | 3:38:56 PM
Re: 2x20MHz
Fair, but they're still at the same spot on refarming spectrum and launching VoLTE. I switched to Verizon awhile back for LTE, but once AT&T launched in Chicago, the service was better, so I switched back. Wonder if there are many people who did the same.
DanJones
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DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/28/2013 | 3:36:38 PM
Re: 2x20MHz
Well they've been growing their subscriber base faster and have more subs on LTE devices. I suspect they would see that as a win.
Sarah Thomas
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Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
10/28/2013 | 3:23:05 PM
Re: 2x20MHz
True. AT&T closed the coverage gap on Verizon faster than I thought. I wonder if the headstart really helped Verizon out all that much, given some of the growing pains.
DanJones
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DanJones,
User Rank: Blogger
10/28/2013 | 11:10:04 AM
Re: 2x20MHz
2x20MHz channel deplymentsfor Verizon could change that dynamic though.
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