AT&T deploying HSPA 7.2 mobile service ahead of new iPhones

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
AT&T has formally announced plans for deploying its 7.2 Mbps mobile data service upgrade this year, which will support faster iPhone models expected to be released this summer.



AT&T said the upgrade to "High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) 7.2 technology," which delivers theoretical peak speeds twice that of the company's current 3G network, will continue through 2011. Next year, the company will also begin trials of LTE (Long Term Evolution), with deployment of that technology to begin in 2011. LTE plans to eventually reach theoretical peak speeds of 20 Mbps.



Both HSPA and LTE are components of the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) family of technologies, which include GSM/EDGE and UMTS, the worldwide "3G" service supported by the iPhone 3G.



Because AT&T's network is currently based on 3GPP standards, the company can deliver the upgrade to HSPA 7.2 service immediately to support faster smartphones prior to the buildout of LTE, which isn't expected to become widely available until at least 2011-2012.



The LTE Future



AT&T's largest competitor, Verizon Wireless, is also planning to begin building out LTE but currently maintains a CDMA2000/EVDO network, which is incompatible with GSM/UMTS devices.



Once Verizon and AT&T both begin operating LTE service, it will be much easier for US consumers to buy phones that work on either network. AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson, speaking to Walt Mossberg at All Things Digital, noted that LTE will also support data roaming across providers, saying "It?s in all our best interests."



With roaming agreements, the LTE investments made by AT&T and Verizon will both benefit each other's customers. For years, both companies have been dumping billions into networks that can only serve phones related to their own mobile service technology families, which has resulted in massively wasteful competition.



AT&T's upgrade plans and "iPhone 7.2"



AT&T says its current 3G service is available in 350 major US metro areas, with deployment in another 20 planned this year. The company stated that its new HSPA 7.2 technology "will be deployed widely in the network, with the benefits of the network upgrade to be announced on a local basis as the faster speeds are turned up."



AT&T also said it will introduce "multiple HSPA 7.2-compatible laptop cards and smartphones beginning later this year." Next month, Apple is expected to release a new iPhone model that supports HSPA 7.2 service. In addition to having access to a faster network, the new iPhone model is expected to have a significantly faster processor, enabling it to better handle the data it can receive, resulting in faster overall operation.



Asked about whether the emergence of new smartphone platforms, including Google's Android and Palm's WebOS, would be problematic for AT&T, Stephenson answered, "Do I want to see fewer platforms? Yes, it?s better for my business. Will I see fewer platforms? I don?t think so. So we need to take advantage of it and use it as an opportunity."



Speaking of the company's iPhone deal with Apple, Stephenson said ?It?s worked out terrific. We have no complaints.? While he noted that the company has "incurred dilution," he also said it has benefited by getting the premiere customer in the space, one with high data usage and low churn. ?I?m very pleased with the deal,? Stephenson said.



Covering the All Things Digital conference, John Paczkowski wrote that "its fourth-quarter AT&T added 2.1 million wireless subscribers. 1.9 million of them were iPhone accounts. 40 percent of those?about 760,000?were new to AT&T."



Other network upgrades for 2009



Along with the upgrade to HSPA 7.2, AT&T also reported plans to build out other network improvements this year as part of a capital investment plan costing $17-18 billion. Elements include:

Near-Doubling Radio Frequency Capacity. In 2008 and 2009 to date, high-quality 850 MHz spectrum has been deployed in more than half of AT&T's 3G network footprint to improve overall coverage and in-building reception, with additional markets planned for later in the year.

More Bandwidth to Cell Sites. AT&T is adding fiber-optic connectivity and additional capacity to thousands of cell sites across the country this year, expanding the critical connections that deliver traffic from a cell site into the global IP backbone network. These upgrades will support the higher mobile broadband speeds enabled by both HSPA 7.2 and LTE.

More Cell Sites. Deployment of about 2,100 new cell sites across the country.

Wi-Fi Integration. Many AT&T smartphones will be able to switch seamlessly between 3G and Wi-Fi connectivity. AT&T customers with qualifying smartphone and 3G LaptopConnect plans have access to the nation's largest Wi-Fi network - more than 20,000 hotspots, including locations in all 50 states - at no additional charge. AT&T's global Wi-Fi footprint covers more than 90,000 hotspots, and AT&T also can create permanent or temporary extended Wi-Fi zones in areas with high 3G network use, like a grouping of hotels or a festival.

MicroCells. Customer trials leading toward general availability of AT&T 3G MicroCell offerings, which utilize femtocells to enhance in-building wireless coverage.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 42
    chronsterchronster Posts: 1,894member
    What's the point if you can't stream porn on an iphone? Seriously.
  • Reply 2 of 42
    ktappektappe Posts: 759member
    I wonder if these upgrades are the cause of the AT&T 3G data outages I'm seeing every weekend in the Philly area. It will work all week but as soon as Saturday hits...Boom!...3G service elicits a "could not establish data connection" error from my iPhone.



    If I switch off 3G in Settings, (slow) connectivity returns via EDGE. As soon as Monday rolls around, 3G works again.



    It's not just one tower--it's all along the Route 202 corridor from Wilmington, DE up through Valley Forge, PA. Usually with 5 bars of service and fully functional voice & text--only data is affected.



    I welcome AT&T upgrading their infrastructure, but it bothers me if it comes at the expense of current functionality.
  • Reply 3 of 42
    galleygalley Posts: 971member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by chronster View Post


    What's the point if you can't stream porn on an iphone? Seriously.



    Who says you can't already do that?
  • Reply 4 of 42
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,496member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by chronster View Post


    What's the point if you can't stream porn on an iphone? Seriously.



    It will probably work better in an office setting. Why don't you try it at the next staff meeting and let us know...
  • Reply 5 of 42
    tac22tac22 Posts: 20member
    Whats are they talking about with the 3G and being able to seamlesly switch too wifi?

    Just a few questions, they are talking about phone calls over wifi? And if so are they only talking about their special hot spots?



    Because wouldn't it just be awsome that when your at home you can use your personal wifi for calling on the phone? Is that possible? Could/would they do that?



    This would be awsome cuz the cell sservice at my house comes in and out, that would be perfect!!!



    What do you think?
  • Reply 6 of 42
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tac22 View Post


    Because wouldn't it just be awsome that when your at home you can use your personal wifi for calling on the phone? Is that possible? Could/would they do that?



    Free app - it works and the delay is minimal.



    -Ciao
  • Reply 7 of 42
    ivan.rnn01ivan.rnn01 Posts: 1,822member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by CarolWendy View Post


    Free app - it works and the delay is minimal.



    -Ciao



    There're even better options. SipPhone, for instance. It's payable, but isn't tied to Skype, supports standard SIP protocol, manages provider's certificates, etc.
  • Reply 8 of 42
    pg4gpg4g Posts: 383member
    Haha I just found out meanwhile that my iPhone is running on a network capable of 21Mb/s as is...



    Gotta love Telstra in Australia (though they charge through the nose!)
  • Reply 9 of 42
    tac22tac22 Posts: 20member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by CarolWendy View Post


    Free app - it works and the delay is minimal.



    -Ciao



    But what if AT&T implemented it so you wouldn't have to use an app like skype and the costs were already covered by your current plan and it worked like just as if you were on a cellular network calling and recieving calls???
  • Reply 10 of 42
    str1f3str1f3 Posts: 573member
    I don't believe a word that comes out of AT&T's mouth. I'll believe it when I see it.
  • Reply 11 of 42
    chronsterchronster Posts: 1,894member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by galley View Post


    who says you can't already do that?



    instructions now
  • Reply 12 of 42
    tyrnighttyrnight Posts: 24member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by chronster View Post


    instructions now



    look up "iPhone Porn Grid" on your iphone browser in google



    Ta Ta Voila



    Streamed porn



    Creamed Corn



    et al!
  • Reply 13 of 42
    benroethigbenroethig Posts: 2,782member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by str1f3 View Post


    I don't believe a word that comes out of AT&T's mouth. I'll believe it when I see it.



    And you probably won't unless you live in L.A., Chicago, or NYC. AT&T will do what they usually do, bring it out in a couple high profile markets just to say they have it and leave everybody else still using edge.
  • Reply 14 of 42
    neilmneilm Posts: 589member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post


    And you probably won't unless you live in L.A., Chicago, or NYC. AT&T will do what they usually do, bring it out in a couple high profile markets just to say they have it and leave everybody else still using edge.



    Nonsense. AT&T says it has 3G coverage in 350 markets, and the fact that they've deployed it here in Fort Wayne, IN, not exactly exactly the hub of the known universe, supports their assertion.
  • Reply 15 of 42
    nofeernofeer Posts: 2,422member
    if they upgrade to 7.2 network, what about our present iphone 3g? the best i ever gotten was 1.4 (eastern freakin ky has 1.4 yo!)

    the chip can go to 3.6 so where is my 2.4 left over i'd love to get 3.6 or even 3.0

    so do you cut in half the max you'll "really" get so what's the point??



    well guess what.....att caps at 1.4 but this sometimes is faster than my cable speed

    http://www.mobilemag.com/2008/06/11/...ped-at-14mbps/
  • Reply 16 of 42
    dappledapple Posts: 44member
    Doesn't HSPA+ have a 21 mbps theoretical peak speed downstream?



    Isn't LTE's theoretical peak speed downstream well over 100 mbps?
  • Reply 17 of 42
    mellomello Posts: 555member
    I'd be happy with 3G that worked consistently. There are times when I could watch a 10 minute

    youtube video with no lag at my cubicle & then there are times when I would wait an hour for a

    one minute video to load up. It doesn't seem to matter how many bars I have in 3G either. There

    have been times when I've had 1 bar of 3G & could stream a youtube & other times with 5 bars

    where nothing loaded at all.
  • Reply 18 of 42
    ivan.rnn01ivan.rnn01 Posts: 1,822member
    how long YouTube clip takes to buffer doesn't depend on the signal strength at the point of iPhone location. It seems to depend on where - on which server - geographically the video is cached.
  • Reply 19 of 42
    mellomello Posts: 555member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ivan.rnn01 View Post


    how long YouTube clip takes to buffer doesn't depend on the signal strength at the point of iPhone location. It seems to depend on where - on which server - geographically the video is cached.



    What about websites? I'll check the same sites daily & there will be days where the network is fine

    & then are days when nothing will load or will load with crazy-long lag. What's worse is that some of

    these sites are formatted for the iPhone. They're literally a small logo & text. They should load in a few seconds.



    When the network bogs down, I tend to see this message often:



    CANNOT OPEN PAGE

    Safari Could not open the page because the server stopped responding.

    (This just happened a couple minutes ago while I had 3 bars of 3G.)
  • Reply 20 of 42
    ivan.rnn01ivan.rnn01 Posts: 1,822member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mello View Post


    What about websites? I'll check the same sites daily & there will be days where the network is fine

    & then are days when nothing will load or will load with crazy-long lag. What's worse is that some of

    these sites are formatted for the iPhone. They're literally a small logo & text. They should load in a few seconds.



    It may depend on the bandwidth of Mr. Site itself, too. And, say, on bad guys, which think it's amusing to launch small DDoS attack against it.
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