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We’re seeing really exciting changes in technology.

People are actively choosing new and innovative products, services and devices that require faster, more robust and more advanced technology—whether wired or wireless. Every month, 500,000 consumers switch to phone services that run on wireless and Internet-based networks. In fact across America, a third of homes are wireless only and another third have switched to VoIP.

People are choosing new technologies faster than ever before:

Meeting consumer demand requires significant private investment from the wireless industry.

Cell sites are a vital part of today’s infrastructure, making wireless investment and faster network construction more important than ever before:

  • Cell sites enable consumers and businesses to get connected wherever they are.
  • Increasingly, customers are going wireless, choosing to connect via newer technologies and products rather than older ones, making capacity and cell coverage more important than ever before. In fact, approximately 1/3 of American households have NO landline.[7]

Individuals and households are not the only ones who are going wireless.

  • Businesses increasingly depend on strong wireless service to carry them and their employees through the work day. 66 percent of small businesses surveyed said they could not survive - or it would be a major challenge to survive - without wireless technology.[8]
  • Public safety is improved by the power of mobile communications as a critical tool for first responders in emergency situations. Mobile phones provide caller location and callback information, enabling quick and accurate emergency reporting.

Why is investment in and deployment of new and improved wireless infrastructure so important?

Today, consumers use cell phones, smartphones, tablets, netbooks, e-readers, laptops and more to communicate using more than just voice. Through these new products and devices we can now share our schedules, photos, business plans, documents, contacts, location and thoughts. Increasingly, smartphones are the product of choice; 56 percent of adults in the United States own a smartphone[9] and in 2012, 67 percent of new phones purchased were smartphones (up 30 percent from 2009).[10]

The benefits of wireless technology are countless and completely transform and improve our daily interactions:

Teachers used to wait for textbooks to ship from a warehouse. Now they pull up the latest information and display it on smartboards to discuss with students.

Students use smartphones, netbooks and tablets to access distance-learning applications anywhere and anytime, allowing them to think beyond their classrooms and the local library.

Doctors used to use a landline to collaborate on a diagnosis. Now videoconferencing and high-resolution images deliver better patient care.

Patients now have access to telemedicine solutions that can help manage chronic illness like diabetes and heart disease from their smartphone, provide tools for medication adherence, deliver remote care monitoring and keep them healthy with wellness and fitness apps.

Engineers used to connect to the Internet via dial-up landline. Now they can write code as well as test and deploy new software from their tablets.

Scientists can now use apps on their smartphone to calculate how to prepare solutions, view technical information, search online databases for papers or look up protocols and unit conversions.

Small businesses can monitor and manage the company finances, checkout customers, track materials and take inventory on their phones and tablets.

Investment also brings economic growth and new jobs.

A Deloitte study, “The Impact of 4G Technology on Commercial Interactions, Economic Growth and U.S. Competitiveness,” released in August 2011 shows that wireless carriers could invest between $25 billion and $53 billion in building out 4G networks through 2016, which could lead to the creation of 371,000 to 771,000 jobs. To read the study, visit:

AT&T is committed to expanding and improving wireless network infrastructure to deliver the quality high-speed services our customers demand.

In September 2013, Progressive Policy Institute (PPI) published a policy brief, “Investment Heroes: Who’s Betting on America’s Future?” naming AT&T the top company for U.S. capital expenditures for a second year in a row.

AT&T has invested nearly $98 billion to improve and expand its wireless and wireline networks over the past five years. In 2012, we invested nearly $20 billion to improve and expand our networks and we expect to invest in the range of $21 billion in 2013.

To expand access to high-speed Internet service and bring new mobile services to customers, AT&T launched Project VIP, a plan to:

  • Deploy more than 10,000 macro sites, 1,000 distributed antenna systems and 40,000 small cells.
  • Expand 4G LTE to cover more than 300 million people in the U.S. by year-end 2014.
  • Expand high-speed IP broadband network to 57 million customer locations in our wired service area by year-end 2015.
  • Expand fiber network to reach 1 million new business locations by year-end 2015.

These upgrades will help provide the reliability and performance you expect from the nation’s fastest and most reliable 4G LTE network.


1 FCC Local Competition Reports – ILEC Residential switched access lines – 2008-2011.
2 Global Mobile Data Traffic Forecast Update, Cisco, Feb. 6, 2013.
3 Testimony of Peter Farago, Vice President, Marketing, Flurry, Inc. before the Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade,
September 12, 2012.
4 “Local Mobile Search Study”, Local Search Association, April 1, 2013.
5 State of the Media: Social Media Report 2012, Nielsen, Dec. 4, 2012.
6 CTIA, Wireless Quick Fact, Dec. 2012.
7 National Health Statistics: Wireless Substitution Report, Oct. 12, 2012.
8 AT&T Small Business Tech Poll 2013.
9 Smartphone Ownership 2013, Pew Internet & American Life Project, June 5, 2013
10 16th FCC Mobile Competition Report, March 21, 2013