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Thread: Is AT&T doing much to expand network?

  1. #1
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    Is AT&T doing much to expand network?

    Sorry, I don't know much about cell phones or networks compared to most that post here.

    So, you always hear about T-mobile expanding (that's who I'm with currently but not completely satisfied). The future looks bright for them! What is AT&T doing to expand? I have been "bashing" T-Mobile in a couple of forums due to lack of building penetration and bad connections at my home in south Dallas.

    However, my mom, who has AT&T, came over today and I quickly looked at her phone. Her iPhone 6s was on 4g while my T-Mobile 7 plus was getting LTE. Are those the same, or is LTE a little better?

    Just hoping I won't regret switching from T-mobile to AT&T if the orange and blue aren't doing much to improve things.

    Thanks!

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    Honestly, I haven't seen anything in my area expanded in several years. They have been adding capacity like crazy to sites with additional bands but this isn't what I consider expanding.

    I did see AT&T adding a few fill in sites in my region. They built the monopoles but nothing happened after that due to the cut back on spending when they were making purchases in Mexico.

    I see one of the empty poles in the city everyday, empty, with no signal inside the buildings (grocery stores, restaurants, etc) around the area.

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    I'm in Dallas by the way.

    A spot where my wife would frequent got no service (15 miles south of Dallas by the way, not the boonies), and it was frustrating not being able to reach her. Other than that AT&T was great. It just makes me wonder, before switching, has that spot improved, and are they even trying to improve.

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    AT&T has done some expansion in Vermont based on the new permits. But even work over there is mainly antenna swapping and one oddly placed cell site placed in between two other AT&T cell sites. The thing that's obvious to me in So Cal and Vermont is that AT&T has mainly antenna swapping.

    AT&T also needs to do better in México, it's not up to par like their AT&T network that I'm used to in the USA. I have to jump off AT&T MX and switch to Telcel or Movistar just I can use my phone or suck it up with the choppy FaceTime video or 4G voice on AT&T MX. AT&T came to México with a big splash, but now it's just a terrible hangover...
    Last edited by i0wnj00; 09-25-2017 at 11:18 PM.

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    Zero densification done in the Chicago area in at least 5 years. No major site adds have been done since 2006-7. Kinda pathetic because they have many glaring holes across the area.

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    There are new coverage sites in Northern MN. A site in Isabella was turned on in April.

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    Thanks for the replies so far. Look forward to hearing more.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GusHerb94 View Post
    Zero densification done in the Chicago area in at least 5 years. No major site adds have been done since 2006-7. Kinda pathetic because they have many glaring holes across the area.
    according to the mark the spot app
    they did build a new cell tower by Michigan and cermak like a month ago
    and just recently within past week or so on Pioneer Court plaza by the michigan ave bridge i think because of the new Apple Store opening
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    My experience is the exact opposite in Dallas. AT&T has better coverage than T Mobile for me.

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    AT&T currently has the best coverage in the St. Louis region (though Verizon and T-Mobile reportedly get better speeds). However, I only know of one new cell site added in the entire area in the last two years, and it is so far out in the exurbs it barely counts as a "St. Louis" upgrade. T-Mobile is adding sites at a fast pace and it is entirely conceivable that they will exceed AT&T's coverage here within two years unless AT&T starts filling in.

    In some other places I visit at least a couple times a year... Columbia, MO got two new sites in 2015. Lincoln, NE got two new sites in late 2015 or early 2016, but AT&T has also had permits for at least 3 more sites there since 2013 and has never constructed them. A new site in Omaha, NE is likely to go on the air in the next few weeks, but another site in Omaha had the pole built in 2015 and still no hardware on it over two years later.

    AT&T has upgraded several western Iowa 3G sites to LTE this summer, as well as filling in LTE on what had been an every-other pattern along I-35 between Kansas City and Des Moines.

    But overall, it has been years since there has been widespread expansion. I remember it used to be that the AT&T coverage map was updated every 1-2 months and even on a state level, it was possible to see new areas going online. That ceased once AT&T became more interested in mergers and acquisitions.
    AT&T customer since 2007; Alltel 2004-07. Android user since 2014 and will never go back to Apple.
    I recommend and use CellMapper and Sensorly for testing and mapping signal coverage and have contributed extensively to both projects in the greater St. Louis region and surrounding states.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CallmeJake View Post
    My experience is the exact opposite in Dallas. AT&T has better coverage than T Mobile for me.
    I agree. Overall AT&T was much better for me than T-Mobile. I was surprised when my mom came over and her phone showed 4g while mine showed LTE ON T-mobile.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hdtvtechno View Post
    according to the mark the spot app
    they did build a new cell tower by Michigan and cermak like a month ago
    and just recently within past week or so on Pioneer Court plaza by the michigan ave bridge i think because of the new Apple Store opening
    Probably just adding or upgrading some oDAS nodes. AT&T has pretty much left everything except downtown to rot the last year, with the exception of B5 LTE adds sprinkled here and there.

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    I know of only 2 cell towers added in my area of Southwest Va. One right outside of Salem headed towards Newcastle. It was probably added 10 years ago or less. I think it's LTE but not sure. The other on was added along 81 in Salem, it's a stand alone wooden pole. There's another hole in LTE coverage on challenger Ave about halfway from 81 and 460. Also once you leave Roanoke and head north or south or west the coverage is trash once you leave the main roads.

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    They've been filling in some weaker spots in Queens N.Y. over the past 18 months. About 6 or 7 new sites have been put up. Plus, having 4 or 5 bands running on just about every site has really helped clean the signal up. It also helps that I have an S8A.

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    With AT&T's debt burden and fingers in so many pies it seems their network expansion has become more selective.

    Anyone have Capex figures comparing AT&T's to T-Mobile, both gross and per subscriber?

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