AT&T announced it would roll out its 4G LTE cellphone data network later this year in Salt Lake City to compete with Verizon’s similar LTE network, which already is turned on in Utah.
The 4G LTE technology allows mobile devices such as cellphones and computer tablets to transmit and receive data up to 10 times faster than older 3G networks. It is on these networks that users can surf the Web, stream music and movies, and download apps and songs.
"We’re excited to bring Salt Lake City all that 4G LTE has to offer. Our teams will be working hard across the city toward our upcoming launch," Jenifer Robertson, vice president and general manager for AT&T’s Rocky Mountain Region, said in a statement.
The carrier is using a faster form of 3G technology called HSPA that is compatible with only a certain number of devices, including the latest iPhone 4S. Meanwhile, Verizon’s LTE network was launched in Salt Lake City last June and was expanded to areas in and around Ogden last April.
AT&T’s 4G LTE network is available in 35 U.S. markets.
AT&T would not say more specifically when the network would be turned on in Salt Lake City or how far the network would extend beyond the city. But a critical time for the launch will be at least by the summer and before the launch of the new iPhone, either in June, July or the fall. Speculation is that the new iPhone will be compatible with 4G LTE networks, especially now that the new third generation of the iPad, which was launched last March, is compatible with 4G networks.
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