The U.S. might be lagging other countries in broadband penetration and speeds, but we are slowly catching up. AT&T is announcing today that its fiber-to-the-curb/fiber-to-the-home broadband service U-verse is increasing its maximum download speeds from 10 Mbps to 18 Mbps. (Upload speeds are 1.5 Mbps). The cost will be about $65 a month, or can be bundled with TV and voice plans for more. That comes with free WiFi at AT&T hotspots, including the 3,000 it just added with its Wayport acquisition.
AT&T’s U-verse service compares to Verizon’s FIOS service, which offers maximum download speeds of 50 Mbps. (The price of its comparable 20 Mbps service is about the same as AT&T’s new fastest service, and it offers upload speeds of 20 Mbps).
U-verse has 782,000 subscribers nationwide in 15 markets, and AT&T is expecting to expand that to one million subs in 22 markets by the end of the year.