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AT&T Updates 4G Network, Mobile Device Plans

AT&T is entering 2011 with a new generation of mobile broadband products and services.

The telecommunications titan today announced plans to accelerate the development of its fourth generation, or 4G, network based on Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology. 

AT&T said it plans to mostly complete its LTE network build by the end of 2013 and begin launching the high-speed mobile service in the middle of this year.

As part of its focus on high-speed mobile services, AT&T disclosed plans to introduce 20 4G devices by the end of the year, including two 4G smartphones in the first quarter. The company also said it plans to roll out 12 new Android devices in 2011 and offer between five and seven 4G devices during the first half of the year.

AT&Ts heavy focus on high-speed mobile networks is little wonder given consumers strong appetite for wireless data services.

AT&T, which had 92.8 million wireless subscribers at the end of September, continues to expect growth in its wireless sales to shift from voice to data revenues, according to a regulatory filing. In the third quarter of 2010, AT&Ts wireless data revenues rose $1.1 billion, or 30.5 percent, to $4.8 billion.

At the 2011 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, AT&T also announced plans to work in collaboration with others to explore new applications that could make high-speed mobile services even more compelling.

AT&T CTO John Donovan said AT&T, in collaboration with others, is investing $70 million to build three innovation centers worldwide an effort considered unprecedented in working with the app developer community,” according to an AT&T news release. 

Donovan said the first center is expected to open in the first quarter near Dallas. The other centers in Silicon Valley and near Tel Aviv will open later this year, according to AT&T.

AT&T further revealed plans to support several application initiatives. One initiative includes a program for developers to collaborate with AT&T in order to create mobile, Web and PC-based applications and integrate such applications with the telecom providers U-verse television services, the company said.


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