ATandT Is Top Carrier, Says Business Traveler Mag

AT&T's mobile coverage was voted the best in the world for the third time in a row by readers of Business Traveler magazine, the carrier announces.

AT&T announced Dec. 11 that readers of Business Traveler magazine have, for the third time in a row, voted the carrier's service the "Best Mobile Phone Coverage in the World." The survey was part of the magazine's annual Best In Business Travel Awards, which are now in their 21st year.

"We are truly honored that Business Traveler readers have once again chosen AT&T as having the best mobile phone coverage in the world," said Bill Hague, an AT&T executive vice president, in a statement.

"AT&T is committed to helping our customers stay connected to their world when traveling abroad," Hague continued. "From offering more phones that work around the world to aggressively expanding our global voice and data footprint, we are thrilled our customers know they can count on AT&T for all of their international wireless needs."

AT&T offers more than 40 world phones-including the BlackBerry Curve 8300, the Pantech Breeze clamshell phone and the Curve 8900, which recently enjoyed special Black Friday pricing. Its world phones additionally offer service on the 2,100MHz spectrum, used in Japan and South Korea. AT&T says it supports voice calls in 215 countries, e-mailing and Web browsing in 185 countries, and high-speed 3G coverage in 100 countries.

When all those business travelers are taking time off, AT&T also offers voice and data coverage on cruise ships, including those from Carnival, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian and Celebrity Cruise Lines.

The news comes two weeks after AT&T CEO Ralph de la Vega announced that the carrier will be discouraging users from abusing its unlimited data offers. According to de la Vega, 3 percent of AT&T users-you know who you are, playing audio and video around the clock-are using 40 percent of the carrier's bandwidth.

It also follows news from U.S. publication Consumer Reports, which on Dec. 1 announced that in surveys conducted in 26 U.S. cities, mobile phone users ranked AT&T last among carriers. (AT&T scored a 66 to Sprint's 67, and so the magazine generously declared them a tie for third place.) T-Mobile earned the No. 2 spot, while Verizon came in first.

The complete list of the 2009 Best In Business Travel Awards winners has not yet been officially released.