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Summary:

If you’re like me, sick of the double-crossing, bandwidth-capping ways of the in-the-red Sprint, it’s time for you to start thinking about other mobile broadband options. Of course, you can sign up for Verizon and pay premium dollars for the same 5 GB-a-month download cap and […]

If you’re like me, sick of the double-crossing, bandwidth-capping ways of the in-the-red Sprint, it’s time for you to start thinking about other mobile broadband options. Of course, you can sign up for Verizon and pay premium dollars for the same 5 GB-a-month download cap and restrictions over their EVDO network. Or simply switch technologies and go to AT&T’s 3G Network, which is getting speedier and is as widely available as those offered by Sprint and Verizon.

AT&T said today that over the next month it will deploy High Speed Uplink Packet Access (HSUPA) technology in the six remaining markets across its 3G footprint, leaving it able to deliver 1.4 Mbps down and 800 Kbps upstream speeds. This will be an improvement over HSDPA technology (High Speed Downlink Packet Access), which is slower.

HSUPA puts AT&T on near-equal footing with EVDO-based mobile broadband sellers Sprint and Verizon. And it’s not stopping there — the company also plans to graduate to HSPA+ and then to LTE (Long Term Evolution) technology to offer even higher speeds for mobile broadband.

  1. if you honestly believe AT&T HSDPA coverage is even close to Sprint and Verizon’s EV-DO coverage than you are either extremely biased, or just mis informed. EV-DO from Sprint alone reaches more than 200 million people.

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  2. Well HSPUA is going to be pretty much in most major metros and big markets, the ones where I am more likely to find myself. I think it would be a better option. Who knows what rules does Sprint put in place.

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  3. AT&T is working hard at getting their 3G network built out. Sprint and Verizon did have a head start. However when it comes to speeds, my understanding is that AT&T users are much happier.

    Sprint joining Verizon with the 5GB monthly cap is foolish. It will be interesting to see how many people choose AT&T as a result for 3G broadband.

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  4. AT&T is the king of monopolies. I highly doubt they will let access be unlimited. More likely it will be unlimited for 6-12 months, until they have more subscribers, in which case they will enact the same caps that Sprint and Verizon do. No one wants to court the small percentage of customers who use the network the most. They aren’t profitable for any carrier.

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  5. The timing of this sort of announcement is curious, just a few weeks before iPhone2 is released. Maybe it will give bloggers & analysts time to digest it before Apple sucks all the oxygen out of the blogosphere for a few days. Should get a great boost if the iPhone2 does indeed go 3G/HSUPA-ready.

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  6. Well, AT&T is at least considering a 5G cap, too. The Sprint cap is a “soft cap”, meaning if you continue to use > 5G/month, they will terminate you (but no ETF or overage charges). AT&T was the first to terminate users for excessive roaming (which Sprint is now doing).

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  7. far more important to me than any speed increases is the elimination of any and all FUP ‘caps’ as well as usage restrictions(against VOIP, streaming video, etc.)

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  8. Great. Maybe once they’re done speeding up existing 3G networks they can expand it to cities that are still stuck on the super slow Edge network. I can go 1.5 hours in any direction from Chattanooga, TN and find 3G, but not here. :(

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  9. [...] broadband options. Of course, you can sign up for Verizon and pay premium dollars for the same 5 GBhttp://gigaom.com/2008/05/21/att-3g-network-ready-for-faster-speeds/Disability Options NetworkDisability options network is a consumer controlled, non-profit membership [...]

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  10. I think AT&T has a leg up on Sprint and Verizon because 85% of the world uses GSM with UTMS. The rest uses either analog or 1X RTT (which Sprint and Verizon use). I have had all three networks and Sprint is the WORST (they charged me a 100 dollar texting fee when I didn’t even text that month AND NEXTEL SCREWED SPRINT=LONG STORY) and AT&T’s 3G coverage is not in my area. I’m stuck with Verizon’s somewhat slow network speeds and their crappy customer service (in my opinion) and I am planning to switch back to AT&T when they get a 3G signal in my area. I am also planning on vacationing in Europe (they use GSM UTMS) for about 3 months. I could go to the AT&T store and pick up a 3G phone for about 50 bucks (and not pay a fortune for a world phone from Verizon) and use it all over the world. Too bad Verizon is restricted to 15% of the world.

    HSPDA>EV-DO Rev A
    GSM>CDMA

    Ok EDGE sucks. I’ll admit that.

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