Rumor: AT&T's first LTE-based phone revealed

AT&T's faster LTE-based wireless network has yet to launch but the first smartphone that might support the faster network may have been revealed. Boy Genius Report claims via unnamed sources that it has received word, along with photos, that the first LTE-based smartphone from AT&T will be the Samsung Impulse 4G. There are no other tech details of what the smartphone has inside its casing but the article speculates that the phone looks much like the previously release Charge phone that's currently on sale at Verizon Wireless for its own LTE network.

As we have reported in the past, AT&T has yet to launch its LTE network but it has said that when it does pull the switch it will go live in five large cities in the US (Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio). That's expected to happen sometime this summer. By the end of 2011 the LTE network should be live in a total of 15 US cities. This week AT&T began selling its first two LTE-based devices; the USBConnect Momentum 4G laptop stick for $49.99 and the Elevate 4G mobile hotspot for $69.99.

Meanwhile AT&T's big rival Verizon has been much more aggressive in expanding its LTE wireless network. The first cities and metro areas in the US that could sign onto Verizon's LTE network went live in late 2010. Verizon now says that over half of the US population can now access the LTE network and plans to offer 185 million people in the US access to the network by the end of the year.

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