AT&T takes wraps off wireless data network

September 16, 2011 - 1:10 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — Unbeknownst to most customers, AT&T has fired up a new wireless data network in five cities in the last few months.

On Sunday, the phone company will start marketing the network in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston and San Antonio. But it won't be selling a new data plan — use of the new "4G LTE" network will be a perk thrown in with existing plans, AT&T Inc. executive Kris Rinne says.

Rinne says the network will have downloads speeds of 5 megabits to 12 megabits per second. That's in line with the speeds on Verizon's LTE network, which launched late last year with separate data plans.

The LTE-capable devices AT&T sells are a tablet, two USB data sticks and a "mobile Wi-Fi hotspot."