AT&T is trying to make its 3G and “4G” HSPA networks better in New York City by getting rid of some of its 2G coverage.
According to All Things D, AT&T is moving some of its bandwidth off its 2G network and putting it on 3G and “4G” networks. The carrier is contacting users that still have 2G phones, offering them 3G phones as the company makes the switch.
According to AT&T regional general manager Tom DeVito, putting more bandwidth behind the newer networks “will help more of our customers in New York City have a better experience overall. By re-allocating network resources from our 2G network to support our newer, advanced networks, we’re moving capacity to support the voice and mobile internet services our customers want.”
For AT&T users in New York City, that means more reliable data and fewer dropped calls when in the city. According to GigaOm, New York City is AT&T’s most densely populated market. Network reliability was a problem for the network since the first iPhone launched. Some areas are better than others, but it is difficult to get a good data connection in many parts of the city.
AT&T does have 4G LTE available in New York City, but the carrier still has only a few phones that support 4G LTE. The carrier’s most popular phone, the iPhone, only has 3G and “4G.” If current iPhone users stay on contract and don’t upgrade to the next iPhone this year, network reliability can still be a problem for the carrier.
The carrier is also trying other methods to help its network reliability. AT&T has numerous WiFi hotspots throughout the city, which many AT&T phones automatically connect to. The hotspot aren’t always fast, but they’re better than no data at all. Redirecting bandwidth and installing WiFi hotspots is easier than adding new cell sites.