AT&T is adding and upgrading cell sites in Virginia. The wireless company greeted 2011 with plans to give Verizon a run for its money.
Driven by its desire to bump Verizon from its No. 1 perch, AT&T is in the midst of a $19 billion network enhancement plan that will enable 4G speeds nationwide. The company also plans to launch LTE soon.
Seeking to increase speed, coverage and reliability, AT&T plans to install radio carriers at more than 30,000 cell sites. The carriers are being credited with enabling increased capacity.
In Virginia, AT&T invested close to $700 million over the last three years to expand its network, adding more than 90 cell sites.
“A more advanced mobile broadband experience drives economic growth, stimulates jobs and equips Virginia businesses to meet the network demands of today and tomorrow,” said J. Michael Schweder, president of AT&T Mid Atlantic. “We’ve significantly ramped up our wireless investments to enable an experience that offers Virginia consumers better speed, better reliability and better availability.”
What AT&T can’t build, it hopes to buy. The company recently announced plans to acquire T-Mobile USA.
“If approved, this deal means that we’ll be able to expand the next generation of mobile broadband – 4G LTE – from our current plan of 80 percent of the U.S. population to more than 97 percent,” Schweder said.
AT&T currently operates the largest Wi-Fi network in the country with more than 24,000 hotspots. Expanding that coverage to accommodate the growing numbers of smartphone, tablet and laptop customers is a driving force in the company’s business plan.