AT&T launching LTE network this weekend; competitors shouldn't worry yet

AT&T is finally getting its 4G LTE network off the ground and into the air this weekend.

For being the second largest mobile provider in the United States and one of the largest in the world, it has certainly taken AT&T a while to catch up to the competition with a 4G LTE network.

AT&T is finally answering the call (excuse the pun) for 4G with the launch of its LTE network this Sunday, September 18.

However, its competitors don't need to worry much...yet. Only a handful of markets are expected to be covered by AT&T's 4G network first, starting with Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston and San Antonio. Yet that group will be expanded to at least 15 markets by the end of 2011.

Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile all already have 4G networks of their own -- although the use of the term "4G" with these advanced networks is still debatable with many. All of these networks also already have several 4G-enabled devices each that had been available for some time now. AT&T is more limited on this front.

Additionally, other reports about the initial speed and performance of AT&T's 4G network haven't been overly positive.

Of course, Sprint really does have something to worry about if AT&T gets its wish and the acquisition with T-Mobile is approved. That would beef up and expand AT&T's 4G coverage exponentially as AT&T pleads that it can't upgrade its network alone.

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