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Thread: AT&T to spend $3B to cover 100M Mexicans with LTE by 2018

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    AT&T to spend $3B to cover 100M Mexicans with LTE by 2018

    AT&T (NYSE: T) said it will spend $3 billion during the next four years to cover 100 million people in Mexico with LTE by the end of 2018.

    AT&T said the first phase of its LTE network buildout will be complete by the end of this year and will cover 40 million Mexicans, which the carrier said represents about one-third of the country's population. By the end of 2016, AT&T said it plans to cover 75 million people, or nearly two-thirds of the population.

    According to GSMA Intelligence, the research unit of the GSMA trade association, only about 35 percent of POPs in Mexico were covered with LTE as of the first quarter of 2015. The firm said 95 percent of POPs were covered with 3G.*

    Separately, AT&T also announced it will offer new plans to its existing Mexican customers "that take advantage of the company's North American Mobile Service Area." The carrier said the new plans will allow its Mexican customers to use their voice, data and text messaging services while in the United States. "Customers on these new plans will also be able to use their available community minutes to call friends and family in the U.S. who are on the*AT&T network," the carrier said.

    The operator also said it will offer Google Play billing in Mexico for Android smartphone users--the service allows customers to purchase Android apps, books, movies, music and games and have the cost added to their monthly AT&T wireless bill.

    "We are building a network in Mexico that is capable of bringing innovation and economic vitality to the country, just as we have done in the U.S.," said AT&T Chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson. "We plan to deliver high-quality, high-speed mobile Internet service to Mexico, creating the first-ever North American Mobile Service Area covering 400 million people and businesses in Mexico and the U.S. This seamless network will link together our two countries' economies, people and cultures like never before."

    AT&T's actions stem from the carrier's acquisitions earlier this year of Mexican wireless operators Iusacell and Nextel Mexico for a total of $4.4 billion. The carrier had promised to expand and enhance its network in Mexico, but until this announcement AT&T hadn't provided specific financial metrics or coverage goals.

    "We view this news as a positive for T," wrote Wells Fargo analyst Jennifer Fritzsche. "The company has messaged its commitment to the Mexican market prior--and its desire to build on its acquisitions of Iusacell and Nextel Mexico--but quantifying its investment of $3B over 3.5 years offers a little more detail into T's commitment and expected timing of its expansion plans. We continue to believe in T's strategy of providing 400M covered POPs across the U.S. and Mexico, and would expect it to be a major part of its strategic conversation expected to come at its analysts day after its DTV acquisition closes."

    AT&T currently counts a total of around 9 million wireless customers in Mexico. In Mexico, AT&T will compete against Telefónica's Movistar and billionaire Carlos Slim's América Móvil, which controls around 70 percent of the Mexican wireless market.

    In terms of the spectrum AT&T can use to deploy new services in Mexico, AT&T's Iusacell controls between 20 and 25 MHz of 800 MHz spectrum, primarily in the southern half of the country, including Mexico City and Guadalajara, and an average of 39 MHz of PCS spectrum nationwide. The carrier's Nextel Mexico business controls around 20 MHz of 800 MHz spectrum and 30 MHz of AWS spectrum. That's roughly the same spectrum bands AT&T uses in the United States for its wireless business.
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    More info here.

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    I hope AT&T doesn't lose focus in the U.S.


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    AT&T to spend $3B to cover 100M Mexicans with LTE by 2018

    I would be curious to see if AT&T makes a play for a Canadian carrier, after they're done deploying in Mexico. North America plans can become the standard. Nextel Mexico? Does AT&T now own an iDEN network LOL?


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    Yeah Canada has to be in their long-term future lol. A plan that works across all of North America will be a good selling point.

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    Surprised they're going at it so slow (was expecting all-LTE footprint in 2 years, not 3.5 years), but I guess integrating the networks and spectrum of two carriers (and building out into new areas) takes time.

    This is going to be an amazing offering for the 35+ million Mexicans in the US. Many come and go between the US and Mexico often.

    Maybe it'll encourage either Telefonica Movistar or Telcel to expand LTE quicker in Mexico and sign a reciprocal full network roaming agreement with T-Mobile to compete against AT&T's offering.
    Carriers I've used: Sprint, T-Mobile, Cricket, AT&T, Verizon, Page Plus, Virgin Mobile, Movistar, AT&T Mexico, Telcel, Straight Talk, RingPlus.
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    Finally, real competition in Mexico. I would like to see real competition other than Movistar, which is cheaper but terrible coverage and speeds. Getting tired of the monopoly Telcel has in the wireless industry in Mexico. I hope AT&T shakes up the wireless industry in Mexico and forces Telcel to compete for once.

    Forget about about Iusacell and Nextel in Mexico.
    Both of their networks suck by themselves in the northern regions by the border regions where there's a ton of economic activity. I'm glad that AT&T will be spending money to beef up the quality of the networks and for once and provide continuous coverage between the USA/Mexico.

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    The conservation WILL NOW focus on AT&Ts investment in Mexico.
    I was hoping that nobody would react in such a manner in response to a comment made. You already used up your free pass and now, I'm re directing the conversation to the original topic at hand.

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    Or else. ???? Lol

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    Mexico has needed competition for a while now. This should be good for both Mexico and the us travelers.
    Sent from my RM-1018_1006 via the HowardForums WP7 App

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    Quote Originally Posted by johnhere View Post
    Mexico has needed competition for a while now. This should be good for both Mexico and the us travelers.
    Sent from my RM-1018_1006 via the HowardForums WP7 App
    I think Mexico has been in worse shape than the USA in terms of competition in the wireless industry. At least in the USA you have 4 choices, but in Mexico you have one choice for the best coverage at the worst price, one choice that's a decent competitor but no so good coverage and two small and weak players. If it all boils down to, you only have one other realistic choice if you didn't want to pay Telcel.

    AT&T brings in experience, investment and a new entrant into a market where competition is almost non-existent for a budding middle class. Even important is that Mexico is now trying to promote their Programa Viajero Confiable to US travelers with Global Entry and Mexican citizens so the timing of AT&Ts purchase and investment is significant.

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    I wonder what they'll do for backhaul? It's one thing to have and LTE signal; it's another to have backhaul to support LTE.
    Donald Newcomb

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    Quote Originally Posted by marc50267 View Post
    I hope AT&T doesn't lose focus in the U.S.
    They're planning to drop $49 billion for the purchase of Direct TV, and probably already spent $14 billion into their U-Verse/LTE networks. $3 billion for one country is nothing compared to their already significant expenditures in the USA. The math is already in favor in the USA in terms of expenditures so I would say AT&T won't lose their focus in the US.


    Quote Originally Posted by DRC72 View Post
    I would be curious to see if AT&T makes a play for a Canadian carrier, after they're done deploying in Mexico. North America plans can become the standard. Nextel Mexico? Does AT&T now own an iDEN network LOL?

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    That and, Nextel Mexico runs an AWS HSPA+ network, which I believe isn't too widespread.

    Quote Originally Posted by DRNewcomb View Post
    I wonder what they'll do for backhaul? It's one thing to have and LTE signal; it's another to have backhaul to support LTE.
    If data with Telcel LTE runs decently then I'm sure the AT&T network in Mexico will meet or exceed that of what Telcel has. I expect, their LTE performance to be similar to the US experience.

    Getting backhaul isn't any different from getting in the USA, fiber or microwave, you just have to deal with a different set of rules and players. Nothing AT&T can't handle.
    Last edited by i0wnj00; 06-26-2015 at 03:57 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by i0wnj00 View Post
    They're planning to drop $49 billion for the purchase of Direct TV, and probably already spent $14 billion into their U-Verse/LTE networks. $3 billion for one country is nothing compared to their already significant expenditures in the USA. The math is already in favor in the USA in terms of expenditures so I would say AT&T won't lose their focus in the US.

    They haven't lost focus in the U.S. but basically they aren't willing to spend the necessary funds at this time to complete their network upgrades(LTE, Fiber, etc.) nationwide which is a result of their lack of investment in the vast rural areas that were still Edge a couple of years ago. There are still several sites on E believe it or not and who knows how many are still on T-1.

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    It would be nice if they could at least lower the roaming rates.

    GoPhone is cheaper than postpaid right now
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    Quote Originally Posted by Airb330 View Post
    It would be nice if they could at least lower the roaming rates.
    They do what's in their best interest - maintaining high profit margins - unless forced by the regulators.


    Quote Originally Posted by Airb330 View Post
    GoPhone is cheaper than postpaid right now
    Well of course, that's the whole point, catch people that won't pay crazy contract rates before they get out the door, so they won't go to outside MVNOs (including Cricket) where prices are even cheaper.

    And what do you mean "right now", has it ever been more expensive?

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