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AT&T plans vast 3G expansion in 2008

updated 12:30 pm EST, Wed February 6, 2008

ATT 3G Expansion in 2008

AT&T today said it would rapidly expand its third-generation (3G) cellular data network over the course of 2008, greatly improving coverage of the relatively fledgling service. The carrier intends to introduce its HSPA-based Internet access to 80 new cities throughout the year to include a total of 350 areas. Many if not all of these current and future areas will be upgraded to use the faster HSUPA (High Speed Upload Packet Access) format, AT&T adds. Practical speeds for these networks are estimated to range between 600Kbps and 1.4Mbps with downloads and between 500Kbps and 800Kbps for uploads, enabling video uploads as well as more two-way Internet features.

The rollout is also expected to produce a "clear path" for AT&T as it moves towards even faster 3G with HSPA+ and eventual 4G access using the Long Term Evolution (LTE) standard, according to the company. LTE is not expected to appear on cellular networks until 2009 at the earliest, leaving HSUPA and HSPA+ as bridge standards for AT&T as well as many other providers.

The upgrade may prove to be instrumental to the release of a 3G-capable iPhone, which had been predicted by Apple chief Steve Jobs as well as AT&T chief Randall Stephenson as appearing sometime this year. In 2007, AT&T is known to have focused on expanding and improving its 2G EDGE coverage ahead of the iPhone's initial June release, while British carrier O2 added EDGE to UK towers to help support the release in that country, whose towers often only support either basic GPRS data or else 3G wireless services such as HSPA and UMTS.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. vasic

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2005

    0

    Right on time!

    We know very little. We often infer, speculate, interpret or just flat-out guess. AT&T's announcement about this rapid 3G expansion is perfectly timed. Apple will soon have to submit its iPhone V.2 to the FCC for certification. We should be expecting an announcement soon. Obviously, the don't want to cannibalise the sales of the original model, so the announcement will come as late as possible. Expect the price of the new one to be $600 or more (initially). Perhaps again, two months later, it will go down to $400, and the old model to be discontinued.

    I'm sure Apple will execute this one perfectly. And I'm glad 3G is finally arriving in the US in a meaningful way (and that CDMA network by Verizon is useless to people like me who take our phones overseas into the GSM/GPRS/HSPA world).

  1. fmp3

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 2003

    0

    iPhone and 3G

    Is it not possible for the current iPhones to utilize 3G through a software update?

  1. danviento

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Dec 2005

    0

    Possible? No.

    Sorry, 3G requiers different hardware than the current iPhones have to send/receive over 3G. Look at it this way- if you wait until they make some w/3G, you can have that larger capacity you know you want/need ;-).

  1. climacs

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Sep 2001

    0

    thanks to iPhone

    if it weren't for AT+T, there'd be no iPhone. If it weren't for iPhone, AT+T would not be investing in their network like this.

    I don't like being tied to AT+T (or any other carrier), that's why I don't own an iPhone. But I understand why it needed to be that way and I don't whine about it, unlike some people.

  1. danviento

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Dec 2005

    0

    Professional?

    I fail to see how a glossier black frame makes the display better suited for a professional. Glossiness, while seeming to saturate colors and darks better than matte, dials up glare which reduces image quality. While putting it on the frame wouldn't necessarily hurt the quality of the panel itself, it would still make for distracting glares when, say, someone walks between you and the offending light source.

    As for lowering the contrast ratio on the larger display, why? Larger color spaces and contrast ratios are what professionals who use displays for their image quality demand, and will pay through the nose for.

    It would be nice if truly professional displays were as inexpensive as these, but for now, that isn't the case. Here we yet again have MacNN pimping a product for more than it is.

    On the upside, for those poor ppl who have to deal with HD downgrading because their current display won't encrypt the signal (wonder Vista feature, that) this is an inexpensive fix

  1. danviento

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Dec 2005

    0

    Safari Beta Errors

    The current version of Safari for PC seems to have a few bugs in it yet. If I have multiple MacNN pages open in tabs and post in one, in enters the post in multiple comment text boxes on multiple pages AT THE SAME TIME. Now I know not to have more than one page of MacNN open at a time.

    Interestingly wrong, no?

  1. Constable Odo

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2007

    0

    Why should it cost much

    more? I thought the advanced chip they were going to use has everything they need on one chip. No way it should cost $600. $500 at most. No way they're going to make the same mistake of charging a lot and then having to drop the price when it doesn't sell as well as they expect it to. I don't think $600 is too much, but apparently most Europeans and Asians probably will think it's far too much.

    The iPhone will get it's 3G, but people will probably start crying for 4G. Can't stop the whiners.

  1. ZinkDifferent

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2005

    0

    not $600

    Now that Apple has two tiers of iPhone pricing at $399 and $499, new modms will slip into the top spot, and prior models will slide into the second spot.

    Thus iPhone v2.0 will end up costing $499, the present 16gb model will slip to $399, and you'll probably end up finding the 8gb models on the refurbished stores for $299 (after being reconditioned with new firmware and more hack proof basebands) - all in time for the 2008 Christmas season, and giving Apple a nice end of year boost to reach or exceed their sales goal of 10 million phones.

    I wonder what Ballmer will have to say then?

  1. danviento

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Dec 2005

    0

    Smells like...

    ...the sharp scent of desperation.

    M$, even with the help of Yahoo!, can't become a dominant seach player unless it force-bundles its engine with their dominant browser, explorer. Be it through an difficulty to change search engines (burried in pull-down menus), or homepage difficulty, or any number of the usual M$ bag of tricks.

    I, personally, don't know ANYONE who uses M$ seach right now, even those who only us IE.

    Yes, times are quite desperate if they want to expand into this arena.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    Stuff

    Actually, it's not Yahoo's resistance as it is the buyout itself. Investors have spoken, and the $10/share drop is an indicator that it is not seen as a good play for MS. Someone should point that out to them.

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