AT&T Starting 3.5G Network Ahead of iPhone Gen 3. Hints Support for UMA?

AT&T just announced that it plans to upgrade its network to faster High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) 7.2Mbps technology starting now and going well into 2011. Of course you will notice that this coincide with the arrival of the 3rd generation iPhone that is rumored to support HSPA. AT&T and many observers have repeatedly said that the iPhone is responsible for a huge chunk of AT&T’s mobile web traffic so AT&T is preparing for the next phase.

There’s another interesting comment about how ” Many AT&T smartphones will be able to switch seamlessly between 3G and Wi-Fi connectivity”. This doesn’t mention voice in any way, but could this be the first step towards supporting Unlicensed Mobile Access (UMA), also known as HotSpot@Home at T-Mobile? We hope so! Note that AT&T currently use Microcell, but it doesn’t work on public WIFI or at a friend’s place.

Finally, AT&T said that it would test LTE in 2010 for a 2011 deployment. [press release]. More articles about ATT

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