AT&T announces major mobile network upgrade to support HSPA 7.2 and LTE

AT&T logo we are fast

AT&T cleared up their plans to upgrade their network to deliver faster mobile broadband speeds by way of High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) bringing up to 7.2-Mbps theoretically. With target roll out for 2011, the upgrades will start later this year.

Prepping out to this upgrade is the next possible much faster Long Term Evolution (LTE) updates. We can see the piece of this mobile advancement down right by 2011.

Here is AT&T’s promised road map via MobileCrunch:

  • Near-Doubling Radio Frequency Capacity. In 2008 and 2009 to date, high-quality 850 MHz spectrum has been deployed in more than half of AT&T’s 3G network footprint to improve overall coverage and in-building reception, with additional markets planned for later in the year.
  • More Bandwidth to Cell Sites. We are adding fiber-optic connectivity and additional capacity to thousands of cell sites across the country this year, expanding the critical connections that deliver traffic from a cell site into the global IP backbone network. These upgrades will support the higher mobile broadband speeds enabled by both HSPA 7.2 and LTE.
  • More Cell Sites. Deployment of about 2,100 new cell sites across the country.
  • Wi-Fi Integration. Many AT&T smartphones will be able to switch seamlessly between 3G and Wi-Fi connectivity. AT&T customers with qualifying smartphone and 3G LaptopConnect plans have access to the nation’s largest Wi-Fi network – more than 20,000 hotspots, including locations in all 50 states – at no additional charge. AT&T’s global Wi-Fi footprint covers more than 90,000 hotspots, and AT&T also can create permanent or temporary extended Wi-Fi zones in areas with high 3G network use, like a grouping of hotels or a festival.
  • MicroCells. Customer trials leading toward general availability of AT&T 3G MicroCell offerings, which utilize femtocells to enhance in-building wireless coverage.

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