C-Spire to upgrade network to faster standards - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

C-Spire to upgrade network to faster standards

Mississippi wireless provider C-Spire announced Thursday plans to upgrade their networks to 4G LTE standards, meaning 10-times faster Internet speeds for many customers and possibly relief for rural residents yearning for faster connection options.

The company said in a prepared statement this transition would cost $60 million and should be completed in September of 2012. C-Spire added, the upgrade will affect four out of 10 of their customers, or approximately 1.2 million people.

The upgrade will only affect customers who own phones capable of connecting to 4G networks or who purchase 4G devices in the future.

The press release said Jackson and the Gulf Coast would be first in line, while the rest of the network would soon follow.

The term, 4G LTE, stands for fourth generation long-term evolution. Most cell phone companies currently use the 3G, or third generation, standard which provides peak data rates of about 2 megabits per second. The new standard, 4G, will provide standards of up to 12 megabits per second when downloading and five megabits when uploading, according to David Smith, vice president of Network Engineering for C Spire Wireless.

These new speed would be similar to that provided by broadband. This means rural areas in the Pine Belt without access to cable or DSL may soon be able to connect at speeds comparable to those services.

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