Explore & discover

Helpful Links

Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?


Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

I've heard talk about how ATT is "working on their network coverage" and plans to provide 3G service in Northeast MI "in the coming months".  Well, now that another 2 year contract has expired, I'm seriously wondering if I would be better off jumping to Verizon.  The EDGE data network up here if virtually useless.  5 full bars, yet extremely poor data transfer.  


Can anyone provide an HONEST answer as to when this coverage is planned to be upgraded???  Verizon has had 3G for quite a long while up here...

Message 1 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

Ha Ha thats funny! In all reality though..... Gilligan's Island had a gigE fiber line ran to it back in 2009. Lol

Your area should be getting 3G/UMTS anytime now. In fact the vast majority of towers up there are supposed to be running HSPA+ by the end of the year. If you can get Uverse that would be great because the internet is fast. I can't get it at my house because I am 1 1/2 miles from the VRAD:(


AT&T LTE will indeed be everywhere in the U.P.:)

Message 496 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?


Message 497 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

Lewyman, I'm starting to think you work for ATT Smiley LOL

You seem to throw out a lot of "supposed to be, should be, soon, by the end of xxx" etc...just like they feed. 


Bottom line is they have been talking 3g for going on 2 years.  I would hope by now we have all learned that ATT rarely meets a date they publicly state or CSR's tell people.  


Once again, if you want to see how ATT operates, take a look at Sensorly 3g and 4g coverage for the carriers.  It shows how pathetic ATT really is even though they promise the world.  



Message 498 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

Ha Ha.... No, I assure you I don't work for AT&T. I have received information on several occasions from someone that is actively involved in their buildout though. If you take a look at what AT&T has  accomplished in the last 6 months, it is quite amazing considering how much of northern MI was EDGE this past spring. Pretty much all of the towers in northern lower MI are upgraded to 3G/UMTS/HSPA+ including several towers in the U.P.    Basically, the western U.P. is the last large area in MI remaining on E with bare bones infastructure and backhaul, so it is going to take time to build out 2 generations of network technology. I'm sure there are several problems they have run into, especially with transfer lines (T-1 backhaul) and now the cold hard fact winter has set in.


As far as LTE, they will have no choice but to launch it within a certain amount of time. They are required to basically...use it or lose it and pay hefty fines. That was set by FCC, I believe to prevent companies from hording spectrum.


I have mapped many, many miles of Verizon LTE and AT&T 3G coverage in northern MI on Sensorly. Excellent program and very accurate. The question is....what percentage of people in northern MI have AT&T service and use Sensorly? And what percentage of those AT&T devices are iPhones? For some reason you cannot map coverage using an iPhone.....at least as of a few months ago.  I figure with the big universities in Houghton/ Hancock and Sault St. Marie, LTE will more than likely show up in those areas of the U.P. first. I check Sensorly everyday:)


Lovells tower update: My source has reaffirmed that the Lovell's tower is still on Edge and because of backhaul issues it will not be upgraded until March or April. 😞



Message 499 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

Have any of the '2G only' sites been turned off ?

AT&T's maps have removed all 2G only sites.  Personally, I think its a bit of a ploy on their upper level management, as a statement was made that '3G coverage will match that of 2G by the end of 2013', and by effectively removing the 2G coverage (from the maps?) will suffice to give those execs their bonus.

Message 500 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

Hmmm that's an interesting thought. Possibly......or just a mapping error. Good point though!! None of the 2G only sites have been turned off just doesn't show on the map. Before the EDGE coverage disappeared, there were a few 2G towers not properly depicted on the map, just an orange blur not clearly shown on the map.

I wonder how many of the 3G sites in northern MI are now upgraded to HSPA+? The tower in downtown Lewiston used to show up on my device as UMTS but now it says HSPA+. That change is supported by the fact that when testing the sites network capacity, it is now showing up as 25+ Mbps. When it was UMTS, site capacity was 7 Mbps.
Message 501 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

None of the 2G sites have been tuned down. All are still active from my experience, they just aren't depicting their coverage anymore on the maps. 

Message 502 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

On the coverage map its been showing no voice or data coverage in my area for the past few weeks.. We used to be in the moderate range but, now its nothing. weird. I dont know if they are reworking the map or what.

Message 503 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

We still have Edge...as far as I know. My Gnex decided it was time to die. Stuck using the janky feature phone we use for a house phone until new one gets here. I don't even remember how to use it. Wife called me 3x in a row this morning because I didn't answer and I was spamming buttons like I was playing Track and Field...


I accidentally shut it off and when I booted it back up, the 3g box came up. We don't have internet on the phone, just text/voice, so I couldn't test it out....

Message 504 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

Still nothing from the Lathrop tower.

Message 505 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

It should be any day now for the Lathrop tower to be fired up with UMTS/3G.

I just heard through the grapevine that AT&T is almost set to begin testing LTE in the Traverse City area. When they do, they will launch on either band 5/850 MHz or band 4/AWS. I don't think they have any 700 MHz spectrum there yet. Northern MI will get a whole lot "brighter" by the middle of next summer:)
Message 506 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

I stopped by the Lathrop tower today and the broadband panels are up.


Here are some pics.:






Links to larger images:





Message 507 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

Very cool. Every now and then toggle Airplane mode to see if they've fired 3G up because I am predicting it will go live this weekend. Oddly enough, there are several sites I have seen in northeast lower MI that have the same setup of 1 (new) broadband panel per sector. That is to get UMTS/HSPA+ deployed quickly but they will more than likely be installing additional panels before they launch LTE.
Message 508 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

It's not live yet. All i get is 2 bars for 4G right now compared to 4 or 5 bars of edge. When I went to the tower it stayed on E, I got 5 full bars of E right next to the tower.
Message 509 of 723

Re: Will Northeast MI ever receive 3G?

@Lewyman wrote:


With Midland being along 10 and so close to Mt Pleasant and Saginaw/Bay City, I am guessing they will have LTE service there before March of 2014.


I'm surprised to hear that AT&T has not deployed LTE markets in Midland. Midland has quite a large population comparable to both Saginaw and Bay City. I guess you'd think that since Midland is considered a "Tri-City", they would have had LTE up and running by now. Hmmm...


It's still great to see AT&T investing more money in network upgrades in the state of Michigan, especially in the northern counties. After all, they have some of the best views and likely draw the most tourists in the whole state. 🙂

Cat Happy Remember that Wild Banchi... 1993-2010 Cat Happy

Message 510 of 723
Share this topic
Share this topic
NEW - Take a look at our best value & price ever for unlimited wireless - AT&T Unlimited Starter and AT&T Unlimited Extra plans!

Additional Support