We recently purchased an ATT 3G Microcell to add GSM network coverage at one of our business locations. We are a Premier Business Account and are located in the Baltimore/Washington area. We've not yet activated the unit until we can determine whether it will work for us in our desired application environment.
In doing business with other cellular companies, we've purchased many femtocells over the years and typically they work great in a small, defined area that lacks coverage due to one reason or another. These areas are typically small offices or common areas that are located either underground, near elevators, or the macro site is immediately above or too far away -even though we're located in dense urban areas.
My experience with both Sprint and Verizon femtocell use is that an approved connection list is an 'option' -and one to lock down the service availability to a prescribed group of connecting phones. As with all femtocells, including this AT&T Microcell, there's a capability limit to the number of simulataneous connections. This simultaneous connection availability isn't a concern for us with our small served areas and groups and the very isolated area of the equipment installation.
So with the ATT femtocell information we've read in the user guide supplied in the box, it seems to indicate that only approved cellular devices, configured in advance, can connect to the femtocell for service. And no mention of alternate configuration is to be found in forums. For our Sprint and Verizon Wireless microcell installations, an approved list is not required.
Our question, and this in advance of activating the new Microcell, is whether this list can be ommitted, and thereby allow for any ATT phone that's compatible to connect to the Microcell and its service? We cannot be burdened with adding and deleting all of our visting (and transient) ATT service customers.
This new Microcell is being placed in a common area of one of our buildings to provide benefit to our visiting customers -some of whom may have ATT service. And by the way, we also have Sprint and Verizon femtocells in these areas for those customers' cellular use.
Please provide any comment on how we might proceed in using the ATT Microcell without the use of an Approved Device List. Otherwise, we may have to return our new MicroCell purchase and just rely on providing an added coverage benefit to the Sprint and Verizon service customers' devices only.
The Approved User List (guest list) has to have the cellular phone numbers listed on current, post-paid AT&T celluar phones. There is no configuration necessary as long as those two requirements are met. The MicroCell is primarily designed for in-home, personal use. Even though some small businesses have used them. Being as you have a Premier Business Account, there may be a special configuration that is available to businesses but you'd have to contact your AT&T Premier Business Account manager for that (if you have one).
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.