The good news? After several weeks of speculation and Twitter rumors, AT&T is quietly rolling out its 3G MicroCell. The bad news? As of right now, it's part of a public trial that's only available in Charlotte (with more markets on the way by the end of the year). For $150, those in the Charlotte metro area can pick up the device, which is said to enhance voice and (3G) data coverage for up to 5,000 square feet. Three unlimited minute plans are available for use with the device: unlimited MicroCell calling for free if you subscribe to AT&T's home phone and internet services, $9.99 per month if you have one of the aforementioned two AT&T services, and $19.99 if wireless is your only AT&T-branded service.
AT&T becomes the forth (and final) nationwide carrier to implement some sort of signal-enhancing solution. As a comparison, here's what the other carriers offer:
Personally, I'm considering picking one up for testing, as I happen to be 1.6 miles outside of Charlotte's 3G coverage area and drop calls on a fairly regular basis. But I'm torn. I'm not really sure how I feel about dropping $150 to boost coverage that AT&T can't provide for me. On one hand, yes, the fine print does say that coverage isn't guaranteed everywhere. On the other hand, shouldn't the carriers be offering this solution free of charge as a retentions tool? What do you think?
Source: Engadget Mobile