AT&T Invests $120 Million in West Virginia from 2009 through 2011 to Improve Local Networks

Company Builds New Cell Sites, Boosts Capacity and Adds Fiber Optics to Enhance Networks

Charleston, West Virginia, February 28, 2012

AT&T invested nearly $120 million in its West Virginia wireless and wireline networks from 2009 through 2011 with a focus on improving the company’s mobile broadband coverage and overall performance of its networks.

During 2011, AT&T made nearly 320 wireless network upgrades in four key categories in West Virginia. These enhancements include:

  • Activating nearly 20 new cell sites or towers to improve network coverage.
  • Deploying faster fiber-optic connections to nearly 30 cell sites. Combined with HSPA+ technology, these deployments enable 4G speeds**.
  • Adding capacity or an extra layer of frequency to cell sites – like adding lanes to a highway – with the addition of more than 140 of these layers, or “carriers”.
  • Upgrading nearly 130 cell sites to provide fast mobile broadband speeds.

“Broadband is a critical engine of our economy.  I applaud AT&T for its capital investment in the state’s broadband and wireless networks, which will provide West Virginia with the ability to create jobs across all sectors of our economy,” said Governor Earl Ray Tomblin. 

“Whether you are enjoying the outdoors, hitting the slopes or shopping in downtown Charleston, we want you to have an exceptional experience,” said Erika K. Thompson-Kemp, Vice President and General Manager for AT&T in Virginia and West Virginia.

CNN Money recently recognized AT&T for enhancing its wireless network. Last year, AT&T completed 150,000 network enhancements across the country, more than triple the year before, giving customers more capacity and faster speeds, as well as improving 3G dropped-call performance by 25 percent.

“More than ever, we use wireless communications to stay connected with family, friends and business colleagues,” said J. Michael Schweder, president of AT&T Mid Atlantic. “Our ongoing investments in our wireless network will keep West Virginia’s residents and businesses connected and continue to drive economic growth in the state.”

AT&T plans to support the build or upgrade of thousands of cell sites nationwide to increase network speed, coverage and reliability for both mobile voice and broadband services. In addition, AT&T plans to install additional radio “carriers” at thousands of cell sites nationally, enabling new layers of spectrum capacity to carry larger volumes of mobile broadband traffic. Additional capacity helps support rising mobile data traffic volumes, which continue to increase at a rapid pace.

AT&T operates the nation’s largest Wi-Fi network*** with nearly 30,000 hotspots in the U.S. and provides access to nearly 190,000 hotspots globally through roaming agreements. Most AT&T smartphone customers get access to our entire national Wi-Fi network at no additional cost, and Wi-Fi usage doesn’t count against customers’ monthly wireless data plans.

For more information about AT&T’s coverage in West Virginia or anywhere in the United States, consumers can visit the AT&T Coverage Viewer. Using the online tool, AT&T customers can measure coverage quality of coverage from a street address, intersection, ZIP code or even a landmark.

For updates on the AT&T wireless network, please visit the AT&T network news page.