ATandT 4G LTE Network Expands to 12 Markets

The network expansion to 12 markets coincides with the release of the 4G Nokia Lumia 900 smartphone.

Network operator AT&T announced plans to expand its 4G Long-Term Evolution (LTE) wireless network by 12 markets starting on April 8, corresponding with the launch of the Nokia Lumia 900 smartphone.

The new markets being added April 8 include Bloomington and Muncie, Ind., along with Bryan-College Station, Texas€”with St. Louis, Mo.; Naples, Fla.; Lafayette, Ind.; Baton Rouge and New Orleans, La.; Akron, Canton and Cleveland, Ohio; and Staten Island, New York City, to follow, according to a report on Slashdot.

€œWe continue to see demand for mobile Internet skyrocket, and our 4G LTE network in Muncie responds to what customers want from their mobile experience€”more, faster, on the best devices,€ said Brian Ducharme, vice president and general manager of AT&T Indiana and Michigan. An AT&T release said the company plans to continue to expand its 4G LTE footprint in Indiana over the coming months.

AT&T offers a variety of LTE-compatible devices, including 4G LTE smartphones and tablets, such as the first LTE Windows Phone€”the Nokia Lumia 900€”the Samsung Galaxy Note and the Pantech Element tablet. The company€™s customers have access to a 4G network that covers nearly 250 million people, and even as the 4G LTE network expands, AT&T customers are able to access 4G speeds on their compatible device as they move in and out of LTE areas. The company has two 4G networks that work together for customers, LTE and HSPA+ with enhanced backhaul.

The hotly anticipated Lumia 900 will be available exclusively in the United States from AT&T on April 8 for $99.99. The smartphone has a 4.3-inch ClearBlack AMOLED display for bright images both indoors and out and a long-lasting 1,830-mAh battery, as well as an 8-megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics, large aperture (F2.2) and wide-angle focal length (28mm). In addition, the phone offers Nokia Drive, available to download from Windows Phone Marketplace, which provides free voice-guided, turn-by-turn navigation with a dedicated in-car user interface that turns the Nokia Lumia 900 into a GPS navigation device.

Small businesses continue to ratchet up their use of emerging wireless solutions, including tablet computers, 4G devices and GPS navigation mobile apps, according to the just-released "2012 AT&T Small Business Technology Poll." Nearly all small businesses (96 percent) surveyed use wireless technologies in their operations, with almost two-thirds (63 percent) indicating that they could not survive€”or it would be a major challenge to survive€”without wireless technologies.

A recent survey of small businesses by AT&T found use of 4G technology is accelerating. One-third of smartphones used by small businesses for business purposes are 4G. Nearly nine in 10 (86 percent) of the businesses using 4G smartphones are satisfied with the speed. Of those who don€™t have 4G devices, more than one-third (35 percent) report that they expect to purchase 4G smartphones within the next year and more than half (54 percent) within the next two years.