AT&T finds new use for the landline in Augusta

As people continue to cut the cord on the landline phone in homes, what is a company to do with all that wiring?


Find something else to stream down the wire to customers.


In the last three years, AT&T has spent $100 million on upgrades in the Augusta area, primarily to transition over to IP-based networks for the wire and wireless.


Stan Shepherd, the regional director for Augusta, said the upgrade to the wires have been to get ready for U-verse. That’s its equivalent to a cable company bundle of television, high speed internet and phone.


U-verse has been available in the area since March, though the company hasn’t been touting it vocally until now.


The service has been available for years in bigger cities, but AT&T has been pushing it out to smaller cities.


Television is crowded in this market. There’s already three cable companies and two satellite dish companies, in addition to the online streaming services.


“Where we’ve gotten into it in other areas, we’ve been very competitive,” Shepherd replied. “We’ve been able to pull market share. We still feel the Augusta market is a good place for it. It is a unique product. It is video over IP.”


Shepherd had some statistics. Only 30 percent of households in America still have a traditional landline telephone and 500,000 people are detaching from that line every month.


“We know the trend. But broadband is still something that people are looking for because of the speeds,” he said. “That is still driven toward the wireline side of the house. It is still some way to maintain that investment in the ground.”


But some of that $100 million also went into AT&T’s wireless network. That’s the 4G LTE. That’s upgrading the cell sites and putting up some new ones.


“It’s essentially broadband wireless,” Shepherd said.


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corgimom 04/23/14 - 12:57 pm
We have U-verse, instead of

We have U-verse, instead of Time Weenie. It's better than Time Weenie, although we had a major problem with installation (as in 5 service calls and an installer that shut off our phone. Not happy.)

However, we got free upgrades for a year because of all the trouble that we had with the installers. The customer service is FAR better than Time Weenie, it's like comparing steak to pink slime. It's worth it just for the better customer service.

wribbs 04/24/14 - 06:40 am
If you are getting better

If you are getting better customer service from AT&T than Time Warner, then Time Warner must have been sending people over to your house to kick your dog. AT&T is the absolute worst excuse for a company EVER. I would use carrier pigeons and cups and strings before I would use them for anything.

gaflyboy 04/25/14 - 10:01 pm
I agree wribbs! Cannot argue

I agree wribbs!
Cannot argue with corgimom - I'm glad she's getting good service from them. But I'm old enough to remember when AT&T was one of the most respected companies there were, with a reputation for good service and fair treatment of customers.

Today, when I think about huge, unethical, 'we're going to leverage our assets' if we have to hold something to your back and pick your pocket attitude, AT&T is the one that comes to mind.

Then, every time you have to deal with them on the phone, they end with their corporate required "How good was the service I provided for you today?" What gall and how phony!

... Thanks! I feel better now.

pja5529 04/26/14 - 07:15 am
Time Warner is in this

Time Warner is in this area???

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