Starting in mid-April, the iPhone exclusive carrier will be rolling out the 3G microcells we saw being tested in select cities last year. Basically this little guys gives you 5 bars in your house or place of business over your internet connection. This is part of plan that At&t is working on to improve it’s network issues that have become synonymous with it’s 3G data connection. The best part about this is, there isn’t any extra charges to use this device, all you have to do is purchase the device for $149.00. There is a premium optional package that you can add to your current wireless plan, so that you can use the microcell tower as an unlimited source for minutes, and not have to count it against your regular minutes. If you opt for this, you can get a $100 mail in rebate card, to bring the final cost down to $49!
Basically this device uses your internet to create a secure connection to the At&t network and rebroadcasts it as a personal 3G tower that you can control. The box gives you control over who is able to connect, and you can have up to 4 devices connected at once. All you have do is log into your At&t account and add approved At&t numbers to the list, and then when they come into your microcell, they are automatically connected, unless of course they are already on a call that was already on a cell tower, but it will switch once the call is over.
This is also just in time for the upcoming iPad release and possible iPhone update coming in June. Apparently At&t is looking to change their image on their poor network issues with the roll-out of this microcell; but also changing the way the iPhone connects to the 3G network. It seems some At&t network guys flew out to Cupertino to show the Apple guys some down and dirty on how the connections work and possibly relieve the load that the iPhone puts on the 3G network.
You can check to see when your city becomes available by heading over to At&t