AT&T completes gigabit upgrade for Austin customers

AT&T says it has transitioned all U-verse with GigaPower customers to gigabit speeds and has doubled the reach of its fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network in Austin, TX, and surrounding communities in a recently completed expansion.

AT&T says it has transitioned all U-verse with GigaPower customers to gigabit speeds and has doubled the reach of its fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) network in Austin, TX, and surrounding communities in a recently completed expansion.

All existing U-verse with AT&T GigaPower customers have been upgraded to the faster speeds at no additional charge, the service provider asserts.

AT&T says it also is preparing to offer increased Wi-Fi speeds in the homes of GigaPower customers. Existing customers will be eligible to receive a new Wi-Fi gateway at no charge once it becomes available.

In January, AT&T committed to double the reach of the its fiber-optic network by the end of 2014 after consumer response to the December 2013 launch of the new fiber broadband service exceeded company expectations (see "AT&T launches 300 Mbps U-verse in Austin with 1 Gbps on the way"). The expansion was completed in September, three months ahead of schedule AT&T says, and reaches tens of thousands of additional homes and small businesses in Austin and surrounding communities, including parts of Bastrop, Cedar Park, Dripping Springs, Jollyville, Lakeway, Leander, Pflugerville, and Round Rock.

Sales of U-verse with AT&T GigaPower in Austin and surrounding communities continue to exceed expectations, the operator says.

"The response to our U-verse with AT&T GigaPower network validates exactly why we chose Austin as our first fiber broadband market, and why this expansion happened so quickly," said Dave Nichols, president, AT&T Texas. "Austinites have a genuine appreciation for fast and efficient technology. They haven’t let us down and we’re thrilled to serve up even more fiber fast speeds, including over our in-home Wi-Fi network."

Already available in three Texas markets – Dallas and Fort Worth as well as Austin – AT&T has committed to build its AT&T GigaPower network in 12 new markets, including Charlotte, Cupertino, Greensboro, Houston, Jacksonville, Miami, Nashville, Overland Park (KS), Raleigh-Durham, St. Louis, San Antonio, and Winston-Salem. In total, AT&T is exploring expansion to up to 100 candidate cities and municipalities across 25 markets nationwide (see "AT&T releases list of potential new 1-Gbps FTTH markets").

In addition, AT&T has committed that, upon approval of its proposed acquisition of DIRECTV, the company will expand the U-verse with AT&T GigaPower network to an additional 2 million customer locations. All of these 2 million locations are over and above what the company announced in April.

In related news, AT&T also unveiled plans to open an AT&T Center for Innovation in Austin at 323 Congress. The 15,000 square feet space, expected to open in 2015, will serve as a meeting ground and technology development center for Austin-area application developers, tech leaders, citizens and entrepreneurs – anyone interested in collaborating and designing products and services for a more connected community.

For more information on FTTx/access systems and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer’s Guide.

More in FTTH/B