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RealTime IT News

AT&T Hits Redial on Wireless

AT&T has reached a deal to offer AT&T-branded wireless service through Sprint .

As a result of the 5-year agreement, AT&T will expand wireless services it is currently testing in select U.S. markets with hopes of a launch later this year.

In doing so, it's betting on its brand name, expressing confidence that wireless consumers awash with choices will pick "the most trusted name in communications."

Wireless is an essential element of bundled packages, which help attract and keep consumer and small and medium business subscribers.

AT&T expects to add wireless service to its local and long-distance calling packages. In addition, AT&T plans to offer handsets that also allow customers to make VoIP calls over Wi-Fi connections in homes and businesses.

An AT&T spokesman was not immediately available for comment.

In a statement, AT&T Chairman and CEO David W. Dorman said, "AT&T has proved it is capable of rolling out bundles of new and complex services quickly and cost-effectively, with top-notch customer service, and we are excited to have this important capability that will help us better serve customers."

On the enterprise side, AT&T has been looking to use its IP network to supply advanced network services to large companies and government agencies.

Industry watchers like today's wireless deal. The agreement is especially promising for Overland, Kan.-based Sprint, which could add more service providers to its network. Virgin Mobile and Qwest already use Sprint's infrastructure.

"We think cable modem carriers may also want to offer wireless services and may represent potential partners," analysts at SG Cowen said in a note to investors today.

Financial terms of the non-exclusive AT&T-Sprint deal were not disclosed.