AT&T Wi-Fi Handles 85 Million Connections in 2009

DALLAS, TX — AT&T’s mobile broadband customers are increasingly using the company’s Wi-Fi network – the nation’s largest – to connect to the Internet for e-mail, searching the Web and downloading music and video. AT&T* today reported that its customers made a record 85.5 million connections to the Internet in 2009 using AT&T’s Wi-Fi network, four times the number of Wi-Fi connections made in 2008.

In the fourth quarter 2009, AT&T customers made 35.3 million Wi-Fi connections – up 10 million connections from the third quarter of 2009. Fourth quarter connections also surpassed the number of connections made in the entire first half of 2009.

AT&T, which offers the nation’s most advanced mobile broadband experience, expects Wi-Fi usage to continue to surge as more customers utilize Wi-Fi on their smartphones and integrated devices and have Wi-Fi included with their service.

More and more customers are choosing Wi-Fi for its simple, reliable and fast connection and for its convenience. With the rapid rise of Wi-Fi enabled smartphones and integrated devices, connections from these devices now comprise the majority of connections made on AT&T’s Wi-Fi network. Smartphones and integrated devices accounted for 72 percent of fourth-quarter connections and 61 percent of the total connections in 2009.

According to industry research firm In-Stat, “Hotspot usage is skyrocketing, and our research shows that will only continue as the number of Wi-Fi capable devices and hotspot venues increase,” said Frank Dickson, Vice President of Research, Mobile Internet, for In-Stat. “Wi-Fi access has become easier than ever before with carriers like AT&T including it in wireless and broadband plans, with more businesses making Wi-Fi available as an amenity to their employees and customers, and with smartphones and other portable devices making it fast and simple to connect.”

AT&T continues to lead its competitors by including Wi-Fi for more than 27 million customers – as of third quarter 2009 – with AT&T High Speed Internet, AT&T U-verse(SM) High Speed Internet, and qualifying smartphone and 3G LaptopConnect plans. Those customers have convenient access at AT&T’s more than 20,000 U.S. hotspots.

A recent AT&T survey found that 43 percent of AT&T Wi-Fi users said they accessed an AT&T Wi-Fi Hot Spot four or more times in the past 30 days.

“Last year was a landmark year for AT&T Wi-Fi, and it shows in the tremendous response and usage we’ve seen from our customers and the leading venues we work with,” said Angie Wiskocil, senior vice president, AT&T Wi-Fi Services. “The record growth has been driven by our commitment to provide reliable connectivity solutions, the choice and simplicity of convenient locations, an unmatched portfolio of Wi-Fi enabled devices and plans, and strong venue support. We look forward to accelerating that growth even further in 2010 and beyond.”

AT&T’s Wi-Fi network complements its wired broadband and wireless 3G networks, offering Wi-Fi connectivity in more than 20,000 U.S. hotspots – including retail stores and restaurants from coast-to-coast. A full list of AT&T Wi-Fi locations is available at www.attwifi.com.

*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.

Largest Wi-Fi network claim based on non-municipal company and owned and operated hotspots. A Wi-Fi enabled device required. Other restrictions apply. See www.attwifi.com for additional services, details and locations.

Wi-Fi access not included with AT&T WorldNet service.

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