AT&T to upgrade Chicago network speed, access

By Associated Press
Posted April 12 at 5:48 a.m.

AT&T will install 35 new cell sites in the Chicago area to increase network coverage as part of the company’s $19 billion nationwide investment plan. The company will dedicate $160 million in improvements in metropolitan Chicago.

AT&T says about 500 Chicago area cell sites will have 4G network speed by the end of the year. It also will add mobile capacity, allowing more cellphones to connect through a single cell site.

Gov. Pat Quinn signed legislation last session that removed regulation that hindered wireless and broadband communication expansion. The Chicago Democrat says that legislation helped bring more investment from companies like AT&T.

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  1. bob April 12 at 7:01 a.m.

    This Quinn lets this at&t expand then taxes internet purchases and chases companies out of Illinois with over taxing

  2. Tom April 12 at 7:25 a.m.

    Bob you are a moron.

  3. Steve April 12 at 8:07 a.m.

    Ha…spot on assessment, Tom!

  4. Mike April 12 at 8:19 a.m.

    He might be a moron but he is correct with 75% of his post.

  5. Bill April 12 at 8:27 a.m.

    Bob is right we lost that huge coupon cutting firm.

  6. Scott April 12 at 8:54 a.m.

    Can they install a frickin’ AT&T tower somewhere near my house? My coverage is almost nil. I’m attaching 5 dollars to this comment for my contribution. Thanks.

  7. Michael April 12 at 9:10 a.m.

    Scott, why do you continue to have service with the worst rated wireless carrier in the United States? You should move to U.S. Cellular – the best rated wireless carrier By Consumer Reports and the 11 time in a row J.D. Power Award winner for Best Network Qaulity!!!

  8. Bones April 12 at 9:18 a.m.

    Is there a reason why every time AT&T spends money enhancing their network they have to put out a press release? Is it because their network is AWFUL and they have to do whatever they can to convince people they’re trying to do something about it? No other wireless carriers announces their network investments, and if they do, it’s on a broader scale, discussing changing technologies, etc. Not “hey everyone, look at us spending money on our infrastructure, please don’t leave us, we promise it’ll get better.”

    And Bob, that’s a completely seperate discussion. Illinois has no authority to tell AT&T if they can or can’t expand their own network. You’re arguing about whether people should be forced to pay sales taxes on online purchases. Which has nothing to do with internet providers themselves. And I disagree with you. I think people should have to pay sales taxes in the state where they make their purchase. You want to avoid sales tax, get in your car and go to a state that doesn’t have one. Good luck with that, considering there are only a handful. Otherwise why should local businesses be forced to collect sales tax but online retailers aren’t? Are you for your local businesses? If you are, then you should support Quinn on this.

  9. huhwhat April 12 at 9:20 a.m.

    I would also like to know what this regulation that Quinn removed. This is a pretty half hearted article. I work in wireless development and have not heard of any removed regulations in this state.

  10. DBLOH7 April 12 at 9:52 a.m.

    What AT&T needs to do is upgrade their U-Verse channels in the Chicago to include ALL local stations including the new digital sub-channels. When they brought this service into this area they committed to providing ALL local channels. If you call to add U-Verse service and ask about local channel coverage, they inform you that they provide all local TV channels. They need to now honor their commitments. NOTE: ALL means ALL, not just some!

  11. Ken April 12 at 9:55 a.m.

    huhwhat: I also was curious about the regulation which was removed. I’m guessing it was a regulation limiting campaign contributions by wireless firms which got full bi-partisan support.

  12. joe April 12 at 10:32 a.m.

    DBLOH7 -
    Be happy you even have Uverse! I live in the south suburbs (tinley-orland-mokena) and its STILL not available!

  13. momic April 12 at 11:40 a.m.

    ATT is building a network, that is HUGE news. I guess sticking the occasional WiFi in Starbucks was not network enough?
    Left ATT after 20 years, service has gotten to be horrible. ATT attitude is if you have a contract and there whole network goes down, you still pay. Land-line service is also being let deteriorate. Our work phones, 8 lines, some do not work when it is raining, shorted out. ATT has not fixed in over a year.

  14. KJ April 12 at 11:46 a.m.

    I have a couple issues with the article. First, Gov Quinn signed legislation making it easier to do business in Illinois? I highly doubt that. Secondly, ATT&T should be making the upgrades because their network is inadequate to serve the growing number of smartphones. The most believable part of the article is that IL law prevented needed cellular upgrades.

  15. Sam April 12 at 12:51 pm

    KJ- Gov Quinn did indeed sign legislation with ATT to basically screw–sorry- rip-off their customers in this state. ATT was suppose to offer a better price on land-lines for customers who do not have access or cannot afford wireless. ATT proceeded to increase the cost of landlines this year and I see increase fees are coming for wireless phone users.
    I live in Chicago-ATT does NOT offer broadband or fiber cable-tv service in my neighborhood (U-Verse). ATT does NOT offer broadband/fiber internet access only DSL. WTF!

  16. Tibidabo April 12 at 2:01 pm

    The law Governor Quinn signed last year was the Illinois Telecommunications Act of 2010. Look it up; Google is your friend.

  17. Chris April 12 at 2:56 pm

    I have ATT and an iPhone, live in a river north condo building and have had very little issues with service over the past year. Used to have issues with dropped calls on the like, but not really many problems at all anymore. The departure of all the ATT subscribers who were so fed up with the service that they switched to the Verizon iPhone are making the network even better.

    Anything that Quinn does is most likely not in the interest of the taxpaying residents of Illinois, that I am quite sure of. Guy is a flat out wealth-redistributing moron.

  18. Tom Callahan April 12 at 4:12 pm

    Technically in IL you must declare all out of state purchases on your IL income tax return to recoup any sales tax savings you made when you avoided helping you local IL economy and bought goods in other states.

  19. Bob Fullerton April 12 at 9:02 pm

    Five years too late. I ride the el with about a 300,000 other Chicagoans every day. And there is no service between Addison and Argyle, no service at the Fullerton stop. Just incredible. Gone when my contract is up in July. Will never give these guys a dime again.

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