AT&T Spends $80M On Michigan Wireless Network So Far This Year

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AT&T Inc. said Thursday that it had invested more than $80 million in its Michigan wireless network in the first six months of this year.

The wireless investment in Michigan is part of an overall capital investment of more than $225 million in AT&T’s wireless and wireline networks across the state in the first half of 2010.

Service enhancements included:

* Adding eight new cell sites throughout the state, including in the areas of Canton, Detroit, Harrisville, Karlin, Kewadin, Montgomery, Romulus, and Westland. These additions create more network capacity so wireless coverage is expanded and improved;
* Upgrading more than 40 additional cell sites to mobile broadband service, the fastest wireless technology AT&T provides;
* Deploying additional radio carriers in Ann Arbor, Holland, Traverse City, Waterford, as well as Genesee and Lapeer counties, which improves the quality and coverage of wireless voice and data connections;
* The investment also includes upgrades to the AT&T wireline infrastructure, such as expanded AT&T U-verse services, additional AT&T Wi-Fi Hot Spots, and extended reach of broadband services.

AT&T customers are seeing the results of this investment with faster mobile broadband speeds and strong reliability, according to the latest round of comprehensive drive testing by Global Wireless Solutions Inc. This GWS testing showed that AT&T maintained the nation’s fastest mobile broadband network, connected more than 98 percent of calls on the first attempt, and carried 98.65 percent of calls to completion, a difference of less than one call out of 1,000 from the only higher-scoring provider.

Jim Murray, president of AT&T Michigan said his company’s local investment creates many advantages for the people of the Great Lakes State.

“Our investment stimulates the economy and fosters employment for US workers,” Murray said. “We are proud of that. In fact, AT&T has invested more in the last three years than any of our U.S. competitors. That creates economic growth across the board. Even in this troubled economy, we plan to invest $18-$19 billion this year, assuming the regulatory environment remains favorable. Our plan to invest up to 10 percent more than we did last year — again in these tough economic times — is a major commitment to our customers. But it’s also a huge commitment to our state and to our nation.”

Brian Ducharme, AT&T’s vice president and general manager in Michigan, said that AT&T remains focused on making the nation’s fastest mobile broadband network even faster. 

“Our investment strategy allows us to continue increasing speeds, which means our capabilities continue to grow with our customers,” Ducharme said. “Average national mobile broadband network speeds during the first six months of 2010 are up more than 25 percent, based on internal data.”

These faster speeds have been delivered even as AT&T has managed unprecedented growth in mobile data usage. Over a three-year period, 2007-2009, mobile data traffic on AT&T’s wireless network jumped about 5,000 percent.

The network investment compliments the introduction of new wireless data plans that make the benefits of mobile broadband more affordable for more people. Customers can choose the data plan that best fits their needs, starting with the DataPlus plan at $15 per month.

For more information about AT&T’s mobile broadband coverage in Michigan or anywhere in the United States, consumers can visit http://www.wireless.att.com/coverageviewer. Using the online tool, AT&T customers can measure coverage quality of coverage from a street address, intersection, ZIP code or even a landmark. A map of AT&T Wi-Fi locations is available at www.att.com/go.

(c) 2010, WWJ Newsradio 950. All rights reserved.

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