This new year is fast becoming the break-out year for signal-boosting femtocell solutions. Both Sprint and Verizon are now fully on-board the femtocell bandwagon, and the newly demoted No. 2 US carrier has announced that it will be following suit in short order. AT&T has gone official with their AT&T 3G MicroCell offering on their dedicated MicroCell website (which has since been taken offline), and it’s shaping up to be the more desirable femtocell solution on market.
The somewhat confusingly-named AT&T 3G MicroCell, despite its namesake, is actually a femtocell that connects your 3G-enabled AT&T mobile phone to AT&T’s network through your home’s high-speed internet connection. The AT&T 3G MicroCell blankets your home or office with 5,000 sq. ft. of 3G wireless goodness. The AT&T 3G MicroCell routes all communications through a high-speed wireline internet connection (DSL, Cable) and works with up to four mobile phones simultaneously. Better yet, AT&T’s femtocell supports 3G data, unlike Sprint’s Airave femtocell that limits network communications to the 2G variety.
AT&T is offering free, unlimited nation-wide calling when using the MicroCell. Unfortunately, we aren’t told if the MicroCell will require a monthly service fee (like Sprint’s $4.99/month in addition to the $99 Airave purchase) or if it will be offered fee-free but at a higher initial purchase price (like Verizon’s $249 Network Extender).