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Will AT&T ever improve southeast TN coverage?

Discussion in 'Southern US Wireless Forum' started by BRH, Nov 19, 2007.

  1. BRH

    BRH New Member

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    Just wondering if anyone knows if AT&T ever plans on building more cell sites in southeast Tennessee. I live in the Sweetwater, TN area and AT&T basically just covers the I-75 area in this region. Are they ever going to update this area between Knoxville and Chattanooga and provide more coverage? Also, will they ever fill in their huge hole west of I-75 (Ten Mile and Decatur in Meigs County, Erie in southern Loudon County, and Paint Rock in Roane County)?
    I currently have Verizon but I REALLY want an iPhone from AT&T. Why can't we get any new GSM towers in this area? Has AT&T given up on this area since most people here have CDMA phones with either Verizon or US Cellular, which has much better coverage? Seems like AT&T would at least try and compete. But it seems as if they only want to provide basic interstate coverage in the area and nothing more. (They even closed their Athens, TN store awhile back).
    Any insights from anyone in this part of Tennessee as to why AT&T won't build out in this area, or if they ever have any plans in doing so? (I know T-Mobile is building in the Knoxville area, so maybe they will build down this way and provide some more GSM coverage, but I'm not counting on it).
    Anyway, any insights into the lack of coverage from AT&T in Southeast TN would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Bill Clinton

    Bill Clinton 10 years scandal free....
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    I agree it is disappointing that AT&T isn't providing better coverage in this area. It wouldn't be too difficult for them to co-locate on some of the existing towers down there. I don't have any great information for you, but I do think you should see some improvement by the end of next year.

    Just for comparison, AT&T doesn't have a single site in Vermont. hmmm.....

    It is hard to figure out what AT&T is doing. They are working on HSDPA, now they are upgrading that to HSUPA but HSDPA isn't fully deployed, and there are still gaping holes in their voice coverage.
     
  3. UFO

    UFO Bronze Senior Member
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    The maps at wirelesswavelength.com may give you some insight. As you mentioned, Verizon and USCC are the most popular providers in your area. They are also the 2 providers that hold Cellular block, 850 MHz licenses for your area. At&t holds a PCS license. Many times, PCS license holders will just build their networks out along larger cities and interstates because of the disadvantage of a PCS license. The 1900 MHz signal doesn't travel as far from a single tower, so more towers must be placed for an equivalent coverage to a cellular band carrier.

    This is the reason why many, especially rural places are limited to only 2 choices. (I know in many places it's common to hear "XXXX carrier must be keeping competition away" which just isn't true.) But a PCS carrier must be willing to invest the capital to put service in your area, and in order to do that, they must justify expenses with long-term profit. Since At&t covers the interstate and the cities around you, they probably will eventually expand service to your area. But now, they have decided it is just more profitable to invest their money elsewhere, such as getting exclusive phone deals such as the iPhone that you want and upgrading technology to increase data sales in larger areas they already cover among many other things.
     
  4. Bill Clinton

    Bill Clinton 10 years scandal free....
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    UFO is right about the PCS license impacting coverage. Sprint and T-Mobile are 100% PCS so often they rely on roaming partners for the rural areas. AT&T uses cellular and PCS but since they have to rely on PCS to cover your area, it explains the lack of coverage. Try calling AT&T and see if they will give you any information about new sites in your area. I thought they were supposed to be expanding coverage down there eventually but I might be wrong.
     
  5. jwitch

    jwitch New Member

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    Could it be the fact that this whole area is in the Atlanta MTA that they don't care about
    the Tennessee area. Around two years ago they built out the Morgan Scott county area
    and it's more rural and remote than most of the Rhea McMinn area. But it was in the
    Knoxville BTA area. Noticed that they are upgrading some Georgia areas. Am interested
    in the northern Rhea county area. Verzion is nothing to write home about in that area either,
    but, since it's cellular there is service. USCellular should be ashame for wasting the A band
    there with their mostly roaming on Verizon.
     
  6. BRH

    BRH New Member

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    Thanks for the insight and information. I wasn't aware of the differences between PCS and Cell licenses and the difference in the two bands. I always wondered why AT&T's signal doesn't carry as far as Verizon and US Cellular's. I always just assumed that CDMA provided a stronger signal than GSM. But I guess that isn't necessarily the case. I guess it depends on which frequency band it is operating on. Also, I wasn't aware that this area was considered part of the Atlanta market area and not the Knoxville, TN market. Since we are about 150 miles from Atlanta (and at the end of that market area) that probably explains a lot too.

    I actually work in Knoxville (about 40 miles from where I live), so if I do get an iPhone with AT&T it will work fine where I work and along the interstate to work, but just not too well at my home. And maybe someday, AT&T will expand their tower system further out into the southeast Tennessee area.

    One thing that I wish someone would fix is the big gaping coverage hole in the southern Loudon county area. The area near the Loudon and Roane county line from west of Sweetwater to Paint Rock and towards Kingston has zero coverage from any carrier in a large portion of the area. Even Verizon and US Cellular don't have coverage in this area. It's kind of a forgotten area for some reason.

    But thanks again for passing along the info about the differences in PCS and Cell licenses. Seems like if only two are allowed to have the lower band Cell liscenses, that the government would require that one be CDMA and one be GSM instead of two CDMA's controlling it all. Then there would be both kinds of coverage and 2nd tier carriers could still roam on one of the two top companies. Just a thought.
     
  7. hillbilly44

    hillbilly44 Senior Member
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    McMinn & Monroe Counties are in the Knoxville MTA not Atlanta. Unfortunately the new network president doesn't believe in building alot, he believes in operating what's currently built.:(
     
  8. hillbilly44

    hillbilly44 Senior Member
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    :browani:
    There is AT&T coverage on hwy 72 (Paint Rock & Midway area), and no McMinn & Monore Counties are part of the Knoxvile MTA not Atlanta.:browani:
     
  9. jwitch

    jwitch New Member

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    McMinn is in the Knoxville MTA. Att Mobility PCS license for the Atlanta MTA covers Meigs and Rhea. US Cellular has cellular block B not A for this area..

    Sorry if this is off topic, but, how can both Att and Verizon have a license for PCS block
    A. FCC ID,s KNLF288 and WOCG404?
     
    TN1995 likes this.
  10. hillbilly44

    hillbilly44 Senior Member
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  11. q5ypdg9

    q5ypdg9 New Member

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    I just joined W.A. and had to put my 2 cents in on this thread. :twocents:
    I visit the Athens/Decatur area at least once a year. Particulary off Hwy 30 near the river.

    Quite disappointing that the "all over network" or the "network you can trust" cannot be trusted in this part of TN. :nono:
    Another reason for me to stay with VZW. Regardless of how nice the device is; what good is it if there is no service. Besides, I don't like the voice quality on GSM...choppy and garbled (even with a full signal).
     
  12. maa1775

    maa1775 New Member

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    I hear the Verizon Voyager phone is just as nice as the iPhone since you are already with Verizon.
     
    TN1995 likes this.
  13. Eric47

    Eric47 Bronze Senior Member
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    no service works everywhere. try using verizon in kentucky...when i was up there everyone seemed to have at&t...even in rural areas.

    remember it is not the companys dont wanto provide coverage there but with the sections of spectrum being pretty much taken up in most places, there is nothing to do.

    hence why companys like at&t and verizon are starting to buy out these smaller companys..its not for their tiny amounts of stores or market share of customers, its for thier spectrum licenses.


    ps the voyager is nothing like an iphone, but is good at what it does in its own right.

    hope this helps.
     
  14. att's network leaves much much much to be desired in my area, and east tennessee as a whole. like the op mentioned, att built out scott county, the very rural area I live in. I signed up long enough to test the service out and returned the phone within a week. I had constantly dropped calls and things of that nature, and call quality just wasn't up to par with what I enjoyed with USCC and Verizon.
     
  15. jerry 12

    jerry 12 Junior Member
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    you could get a home repeater and out side antenna to boost the signal at your home. i think that you can get the equipment for between 300 to 400 dollars. :)
     
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