The news out of CTIA just won’t stop. AT&T has just announced their roll out plans for their cell-tower-in-a-box, signal-boostin’ 3G MicroCell service, which they’ve had in testing since September.
Not sure what the MicroCell is? Don’t sweat it – it’s a bit of a weird concept. If you’re in an area where signal is spotty, you can pick up one of these boxes, connect it to your home broadband, and it’ll act as a miniature, low power cell tower. Your signal goes up, and the stress on AT&T’s towers goes down.
Here’s what we know so far:
- They’ll be moving from their limited testing phase to a national roll out beginning in April, with the service lighting up in unnamed cities around the US “in the coming months”
- The MicroCell unit will come at a one time cost of $149.99
- The unit can be self installed; AT&T is offering tech support, but they’re not insisting that their guys plug it in for you
- There’s no monthly fee if you don’t mind that connecting through the MicroCell still uses your AT&T minutes. If you do mind, you can tack on an unlimited MicroCell calling plan for 20 bucks a month. On the upside, it looks like selecting that plan at purchase will score you a $100 mail-in rebate, dropping the long-term price of the unit to $50.
- MicroCell owners can support up to 10 different lines, with 4 of those lines talking simultaneously.
So what do you think, dear readers? Are these prices fair? Are you ready to put a little tiny cell tower in your house?