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Make that: "4G*" coverage maps

AT&T has begun posting maps of its "4G" HSPA+ nationwide coverage on its website

According to iClarified, the list of cities is currently limited to those that have undergone the full backhaul upgrade. HSPA+ has been deployed to AT&T's entire network, but the higher speeds can only be taken advantage of near sites where the "enhanced backhaul" upgrade has been completed.

On AT&T's website, if you hit "Coverage" and then hover over the cities where HSPA+ is fully functional, it allows you to click for more detailed local 4G coverage. The areas include Bay Area, Calif.; Los Angeles; NorCal, Calif.; Houston; Dallas; Chicago; Baltimore; Buffalo; Boston; Providence, R.I.; Charlotte, N.C.; and Puerto Rico.

The only problem with the new coverage maps is that AT&T's claims to "4G", like T-Mobile's (which has also deployed HSPA+), deserve quotations or, at the very least, an asterisk. For much of the past year, AT&T repudiated T-Mobile's labeling of HSPA+ as "4G", with an AT&T rep stating, "I think that companies need to be careful that they're not misleading customers by labeling HSPA+ as a 4G technology. We aren't labeling those technologies as 4G."

Then, earlier this year, AT&T changed course -- likely realizing that Verizon's burgeoning LTE network could spell bad news for a company that was still advertising 3G -- and branded its HSPA+ network as "4G".

Turns out, none of the wireless carriers can truly brag about 4G, despite the boldest claims of their marketers.





"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone



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