Arkansas Economic Development Commission


AT&T invested more than $700 million in Arkansas from 2009 through 2012 to enhance speeds, reliability and performance for customers

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Feb. 22, 2013) - AT&T invested more than $700 million in its Arkansas wireless and wireline networks from 2009 through 2012, with a focus on expanding 4G LTE mobile Internet coverage and enhancing the overall performance of its networks.

AT&T has made more than 1,100 wireless network upgrades in six key categories in Arkansas during 2012, including activating new cell sites, adding capacity, upgrading cell sites to provide fast 4G LTE mobile Internet speeds, deploying high-capacity Ethernet connections to cell sites, and adding or upgrading Distributed Antenna Systems, which boost wireless coverage and capacity in buildings and at major venues like convention halls or sports arenas.

"Our 2,200-plus Arkansas employees work diligently to bring customers a valued product and great service. We are dedicated to providing an excellent customer experience while at the same time investing in our state," said AT&T Arkansas President Ed Drilling.

"Not only has AT&T invested in upgrading wireline and wireless networks, we have also invested in Arkansas; creating good paying jobs, paying around $200 million annually in taxes, and volunteering countless hours to our local communities. AT&T's investment in our networks is designed to deliver a superior mobile internet experience, encompassing speed, coverage and reliability. Our investment in Arkansas is all about making our state a better place to work and live," Drilling said.

AT&T launched 4G LTE in the Northwest Arkansas, Central Arkansas and Jonesboro areas in 2012. AT&T 4G LTE is the latest generation of wireless network technology and provides faster mobile Internet speeds and improved performance on a variety of mobile smartphones and tablets.

The AT&T 4G LTE network has been nationally recognized for its speed and coverage. AT&T 4G LTE delivered faster average download speeds than any of the competitors in PCWorld's most recent 13-market speed tests, and telecommunications industry analyst firm Frost and Sullivan awarded AT&T its North American Mobile Network Strategy Award for the second year in a row in 2012.

"Good companies invest in their business year after year not because they seek incentives, but because it makes them stronger, more competitive, and enables them to provide a higher level of service to their customers," said Grant Tennille, Executive Director of the Arkansas Economic Development Commission. "I applaud AT&T's continued investment in its wireless and wireline networks, strengthening its infrastructure which helps communities and the state to create good jobs."

"Across Arkansas the robust investment in the AT&T wireless and wireline networks is essential to spurring the economy and creating jobs. In our wireless world, mobile and broadband networks create economic opportunities for health care, manufacturing, education, transportation and public safety and virtually every other economic sector," Drilling said.

Planned Investment to Expand Reach of Wireless and Wired Broadband

AT&T recently launched Project Velocity IP (VIP), a three-year investment initiative to expand and enhance its wireless and wired IP broadband networks. As part of Project VIP, AT&T plans to increase the density of its wireless network by deploying more than 10,000 macro sites, more than 1,000 distributed antenna systems, and more than 40,000 small cells. Through this initiative, the company also plans to:

Expand 4G LTE to cover more than 300 million people by year-end 2014
Expand the AT&T wired IP broadband network to cover approximately 75 percent of customer locations in the company's wired service area by year-end 2015
Expand the AT&T fiber network to reach 1 million additional business locations by year-end 2015

For more information about AT&T's coverage in Arkansas or anywhere in the U.S., consumers can visit the AT&T Coverage Viewer. Using the online tool, AT&T customers can measure coverage quality of coverage from a street address, intersection, ZIP code or even a landmark. For updates on the AT&T wireless network, please visit the AT&T network news page.