AT&T to upgrade VT's network

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AT&T to upgrade VT's network

Postby The Sweeper » Fri Feb 27, 2009 7:46 am ... 003/NEWS02

By BRUCE EDWARDS Rutland Herald STAFF - Published: February 27, 2009

AT&T Wireless is quickly moving to upgrade its network in Vermont with added cell sites and the latest wireless and broadband technology.

The company announced the move Thursday, which comes just a month after AT&T's takeover of the Unicel network in the state.

The upgrade includes a robust "3G" mobile broadband network with faster speeds to handle interactive voice, video and data applications. The company said it will complete the 3G upgrade by the end of the year.

Before upgrading to 3G technology, AT&T will first integrate the existing Unicel network into its own network by the middle of the year. So-called 3G is the third generation of telecommunication standards and technology for mobile networking, superseding 2.5G.

AT&T spokeswoman Kate MacKinnon said AT&T inherited Unicel's 2.5G network but the next generation 3G network will offer broadband speeds for a variety of mobile devices and laptop computers for better access to e-mail and the Internet.

The third part of AT&T's multimillion-dollar investment is expanding its network in the state.

"The last part is adding 15 new cell sites and these are in areas where we don't currently have cell sites," MacKinnon said, "so this would be brand-new coverage areas or significantly enhancing coverage in a particular area."

The new cell sites will cover Rochester, Wilmington, Lincoln, Williston, Cuttingsville, Essex, Springfield, Westfield, Fairfield, Plainfield, Sheldon, Poultney, Milton, Cabot and Eden.

Kevin Dorn, secretary of the Agency of Commerce and Community Development, said AT&T's investment will also benefit businesses in the state.

"The expansion of wireless broadband in Vermont brings many benefits to the small and medium businesses in our communities that rely on wireless connectivity to run and manage their enterprise," Dorn said in a statement. "Investments in networks that deliver high-speed wireless connectivity are especially welcome at a time when economic challenges make growing our communities particularly challenging."

Unicel customers have until the end of the year to switch to AT&T or another wireless carrier. AT&T is waiving its activation fee for Unicel customers.

AT&T operates 10 retail stores in Vermont.

The state's other major cell phone provider is Verizon Wireless, which also has a 3G network
The Sweeper
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Re: AT&T to upgrade VT's network

Postby dmarkson » Sat Feb 28, 2009 9:13 am

It would be funny if AT&T had all of VT at 3G and the rest of the country is, well, like it is now.
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