AT&T 3G MicroCell to Retail for $150, Forego Monthly Fees

Assorted user reports have emerged citing that AT&T’s new 3G MicroCell has been test launched in the Charlotte, North Carolina market, with a $150 price tag and no required monthly fees. According to GearLog, an AT&T representative has stated that the femtocell device provides 3.2Mbit/sec 3G service, which is on par with AT&T’s existing towers in areas of ideal service, but not the maximum 7.2MBit/sec speed supported by the iPhone 3GS.

The device will blanket 5,000 square feet (about a 40 foot radius from the device) of home or office space with excellent voice, text, and data service coverage to prevent dropped calls or delayed messages. SMS messages, like voice calls, require mobile data service and can’t be sent over WiFi.

The 3G MicroCell will support up to four users making simultaneous calls, and up to ten users on 3G standby available for incoming calls and messages. In order to support that bandwidth, the 3G MicroCell needs to be connected to an appropriately fast broadband connection. Typical DSL service provides 1.5Mbit/sec downloads and 0.7Mbit/sec uploads; a voice call consumes around 0.04Mbit/sec upload and download. The device will reportedly retail for $150 with no monthly fees, but will still feature a $20/month unlimited calling plan.

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