AT&T and Verizon expand 4G LTE networks into new markets

February 15, 2012 | by Andrew Kameka

AT&T, Verizon

Verizon Wireless 4G LTE Coverage Map

The nation’s top wireless carriers are expanding the reach of their respective 4G LTE networks. Today, both AT&T and Verizon announced that its LTE footprint is growing in select markets in the United States.

AT&T has confirmed that it has expanded service in the Central Florida region, adding LTE in Hillsborough, Pinellas, and Pasco counties. The Tampa Bay metro area should see faster speeds, provided that they have a capable device like the Samsung Galaxy Note or HTC Vivid. Those with pre-LTE devices won’t move as fast, but they will still see network improvements thanks to optimizations for the HSPA+ network.

Today’s expansion was good news for AT&T customers, but it was a reminder that AT&T still lags far behind Verizon in its LTE roll-out. AT&T supports less than 20 markets, while Verizon supports nearly 10 times as many and covers 200 million people in the process. Big Red announced that tomorrow (Feb. 16, 2012) it will launch 4G LTE in the following areas:

  • Little Rock, Arkansas
  • Rapid City, South Dakota
  • San Antonio, Texas
  • Cookeville, Tennessee

That brings Verizon’s total number of supported markets up to 196. Customers in the new markets can expect download speeds ranging from 5 to 12 Mbps, and upload speeds ranging from 2 to 5 Mbps.

AT&T doesn’t tout estimated download speeds in its Tampa-St. Pete announcement, but previous markets support numbers similar to what Verizon advertises. Here’s a list of the AT&T 4G LTE compatible devices.