AT&T Invests Nearly $65 Million Through 2009 to Strengthen 3G Wireless Coverage in SF Bay Area
Deployment of 850 Mhz Spectrum for 3G in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area Improves In-Building Wireless Coverage, Adds Capacity to Support Surging Demand for Mobile Broadband
Los Angeles, California, San Francisco, California, November 17, 2009
AT&T* today announced that it has invested nearly $65 million from 2008 through the 3rd quarter of 2009 to complete a substantial upgrade of its local 3G wireless network in the greater San Francisco Bay Area with the launch of additional wireless spectrum in the 850 MHz band. As a result of this upgrade, local customers are expected to experience better 3G wireless connectivity, performance and enhanced in-building wireless coverage. The enhancement also increases network capacity, and is intended to support the ever-growing demand for 3G mobile broadband service. In the greater Bay Area, AT&T upgraded close to 850 cell sites as part of this enhancement, the majority coming in the 3rd quarter of 2009.
This network enhancement is one part of AT&T’s ongoing efforts to drive innovation by investing to deliver the benefits of smartphones and mobile broadband for customers. More smartphone customers have chosen AT&T over any U.S. competitor, resulting in wireless traffic on the AT&T network that has quadrupled over the past year. This growth includes a volume of smartphone data traffic over the AT&T network that is unmatched in the wireless industry.
The high-quality 850 MHz spectrum generally results in better in-building coverage. While specific benefits of the additional spectrum will vary by location, AT&T 3G customers should see improved quality and coverage throughout dozens of greater Bay Area communities, including San Francisco, Brisbane, Daly City, Colma, South San Francisco, Pacifica, Sausalito, Tiburon, Mill Valley, Corte Madera, San Rafael, San Anselmo, Oakland, Emeryville, Berkeley, Alameda, Piedmont, Hayward, San Leandro, San Mateo, Burlingame, Millbrae, Hillsborough, Palo Alto, San Carlos, Belmont, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Richmond, Albany, El Sobrante, El Cerritos, Pinole, Crockett, Hercules and more.
In addition to providing additional 850 spectrum for 3G, AT&T has increased capacity to hundreds of cell sites across the bay area, expanding the critical connections that deliver traffic from a cell site into the global IP backbone network, helping meet the unprecedented demand for mobile connectivity. With more and more people upgrading to smartphones and integrated devices with full QWERTY keyboards, since 2008 AT&T’s network in the San Francisco area has experienced a 3G data traffic increase of 2000 percent.
“More than ever before, customers look to wireless communications to stay in touch with family, friends and business colleagues,” said Terry Stenzel, AT&T vice president and general manager for Northern California/Reno. “The additional spectrum helps to enhance the 3G network so that our customers have the best experience when they make a call, check an e-mail, download a video or song, access applications or surf the Internet on their AT&T device.”
This deployment is one part of AT&T’s ongoing initiatives to enhance the speed and performance of its network. Recently, AT&T announced plans to further upgrade its 3G network nationwide with HSPA 7.2 technology to deliver considerably faster mobile broadband speeds. The upgrades are planned to begin in the fourth quarter, with completion expected in 2011. In the San Francisco Bay Area, AT&T plans to roll out HSPA 7.2 in 2010.
Additionally, AT&T is continually optimizing the network and adding cell sites across the country to maximize performance for customers. In the Bay Area in 2009, AT&T has added nearly 40 new cell sites, expanding coverage and creating new footprints of wireless connectivity. AT&T is planning to add approximately 1,900 cell sites nationwide by the end of this year, and we’re adding new backhaul connections across the country to support the increasing volumes of mobile data traffic.
“Californians’ appetite for mobile broadband is unprecedented. That’s why we continue to be hard at work evolving and enhancing our facilities to meet customers’ demand,” said Loretta Walker, Vice President, External Affairs – Bay Area. “Ongoing investment in our network infrastructure here in the Bay Area and across the state reinforces our commitment to providing our customers with a quality wireless experience.”
AT&T’s 3G mobile broadband network is based on the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) family of technologies that includes GSM and UMTS, the most open and widely used wireless network platforms in the world. AT&T offers 3G data roaming in more than 100 countries, as well as voice calling in more than 215 countries.
Across the U.S., AT&T’s 3G network is available in more than 350 major metropolitan areas. For more information about AT&T’s 3G coverage in the greater San Francisco Bay Area, or anywhere in the United States, consumers can go to http://www.wireless.att.com/coverageviewer/. The online tool shows the quality of coverage based on a street address, intersection, ZIP code or even a landmark.
*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.
AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is a premier communications holding company. Its subsidiaries and affiliates, AT&T operating companies, are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. Among their offerings are the world's most advanced IP-based business communications services, the nation’s fastest 3G network and the best wireless coverage worldwide, and the nation's leading high speed Internet access and voice services. In domestic markets, AT&T is known for the directory publishing and advertising sales leadership of its Yellow Pages and YELLOWPAGES.COM organizations, and the AT&T brand is licensed to innovators in such fields as communications equipment. As part of their three-screen integration strategy, AT&T operating companies are expanding their TV entertainment offerings. In 2009, AT&T again ranked No. 1 in the telecommunications industry on FORTUNE® magazine’s list of the World’s Most Admired Companies. Additional information about AT&T Inc. and the products and services provided by AT&T subsidiaries and affiliates is available at http://www.att.com.
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