Mobile broadband coming

ALBANY, Ga. -- AT&T this week announced plans to bring 3G mobile broadband service to the area before the end of the year. The company says the upgraded network will provided accelerated data speeds and the ability to talk and surf the web at the same time.

"This expansion is very important to the Albany area," said Catherine Glover, president and CEO of the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce. "More than ever before businesses are using

wireless communications to stay in touch and we appreciate

AT&T's continued investment in our community."

The planned wireless network enhancement strategy is part of AT&T's 2010 wireline and wireless capital investment, which is expected to be in the $18 billion to $19 billion range companywide, an increase of 5-10 percent over 2009.

This planned amount also includes an increase of about $2 billion in capital expenditures for wireless and backhaul related to AT&T's wireless network.

"Supporting mobile broadband growth is our No. 1 investment priority," Keith Holmes, vice president and general manager of AT&T Georgia, said. "With this launch, our customers can enjoy the most advanced mobile broadband experience, whether it's sharing video and photos, watching a movie, checking scores, accessing thousands of mobile apps, or listening to music on a phone, netbook or other on-the-go device."

According to a company news release, "AT&T recently upgraded 3G cell sites nationwide to High-Speed Packet Access (HSPA) 7.2. Future plans include another upgrade to HSPA+ technology at the end of this year followed by the initial deployment next year of LTE, the next-generation of wireless technology.

"These advancements, when combined with an ongoing initiative to increase the number of high-speed backhaul connections to cell sites, will deliver a considerable boost to mobile broadband speeds."