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AT&T to upgrade 3G service, iPhone must wait

updated 03:00 pm EDT, Tue September 25, 2007

AT&T to upgrade 3G service

AT&T has promised to unveil an upgrade to its mobile network with a six-fold upload increase, but those improvements won't include Apple's iPhone until the Cupertino-based company unveils a newer model with support for the carrier's quicker service. AT&T wireless network services president Richard Burns told Reuters in an interview that the cellular carrier expects to perform most of its planned upgrades in October and November, ramping upload speeds to help meet higher bandwidth demand from customers. "The ability to upload is becoming more important," Burns said. "Everybody in the street is becoming a reporter so the desire to be able to upload is growing. That's become a much bigger part of consumer demand than it was just a few years ago." The network upgrades will increase speeds to 500-800Kbps from the current 120Kbps, but Burns points to AT&T surveys that suggest iPhone owners are happy with their slower EDGE service.

A recent report hinted at a new 3G/GPS-enabled iPhone that uses AT&T's faster service. The new model is allegedly due to arrive some time during the first quarter of next year, and would drastically increase internet connection speeds for iPhone owners who are not within range of a Wi-Fi network.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. Flying Meat

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    how fast

    will I be able to upload ridiculously huge fees to my bill? :P

  1. Feathers

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    double damage...

    So how long have AT&T been planning these upgrades? Months? Years? And yet the iPhone early adopters will now find themselves having paid a premium price for an inferior service and device. I'm sure they were happy and bought into the Apple-AT&T vortex of their own free will but this whole thing is really starting to stink a bit.

  1. jasonsRX7

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Nice

    I deploy AT&T 3g wireless cards at the office, and have one for myself. That will be a nice increase for us.

  1. maybesew

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    feathers

    shut up. every iphone customer knew they weren't buying a 3g phone. this has nothing to do with penalizing early adopters.

  1. danviento

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    thank you,

    maybesew, for stating the obvious. Everyone knew that this first iPhone wouldn't have 3g from the start, because AT&T didn't have the network for it, others that did turned Apple down, and it wasn't much of a standard world-wide. Piss and moan all you want, but it won't shift fault for one having bought into the current device.

    I got a Powerbook g4 17" a mere month before the intel transition, and I'm one who could truly use paralells for my work needs, but you don't hear me complaining.

  1. vasic

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Irrelevant

    AT&T's 3G footprint on the US map is more like specks of dirt. If you try to find a national coverage map for 3G on their site, you wont be able to; it's not there. Instead, you can zoom into some of the metro areas and only then you can see some 3G areas. If they were to allow you to zoom out to see the entire US, there wouldn't be small enough pixels to represent 3G coverage...

    Instead of investing into upload speeds, AT&T might have spent some money for better coverage. Then again, speed bump cost very little compared to network buildup, and both get similar PR mileage.

    In the end, the country will have to wait for a few years before 3G becomes remotely usable to the suburban and rural population. By then, iPhone will be on its third generation.

  1. maybesew

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    danv

    i don't quite understand what you are directing at me? I'm not pissing and moaning at all. i love my iphone and don't care at all about 3G.

  1. lockhartt

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    catch 22

    It's likely that the success of the EDGE iPhone is actually giving Apple the leverage to push AT&T to deploy 3G. There is little doubt that Apple would have preferred to go 3G out-of-the-gate. Steve's comments about no 3G until battery life meets minimum spec does hold some potential credibility, but the advantage of being able to deploy a single device that would be accepted across a broader global market seems a no-brainer... except that Apple didn't have the leverage to force the issue with cingular/AT&T - they had a hard enough time finding a willing U.S. partner, period.

  1. danviento

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    maybesew & others

    sorry about my aim, it was supposed to be to those who would feel like venting about network locks and how AT&T isn't as good as so-and so.

  1. moteltan

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    96% satisified

    The 3G chip is too power-hungry. A better chip will surface. Same as the GPS chip. As a release-day buyer, I knew someday AT&T would roll-out better 3G (or perish). I knew that 2nd-gen iPhones would be released. I've got no probs with this. I still have a piece of technology that it a full quantum leap ahead of everything else behind it. Such an upgrade--even if it would have been bug-ridden (which it is not)--would have been worth the $100 early-adopters fee charged by aapl. 1st-gen iPhone isn't like 1st-gen Ford Mustangs. The delta between 0-gen and 1st-gen is astronomically greater than 1st-gen and 2nd-gen, so much so that waiting is ridiculous. Go buy one. Pay the extra $20/month for iPhone unlimited data. I enjoy mine to no end. 96% satisfied.

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