Cingular: 3G rollout is on time

According to Cingular spokesman Ritch Blasi, a recent Bloomberg report that claims Cingular's 3G network deployments are behind schedule, is "totally incorrect...We are on schedule to offer service in most major markets this year and in the top 100 next year, according to our plan, and in alignment with what we've told the financial community." Blasi said Cingular will cover about three-fourths of the top 100 markets this year with its 3G HSDPA network and the remaining markets will see deployment by early next year, which echoes statements made in January by AT&T CEO Ed Whitacre at a meeting of Wall Street analysts. Cingular currently offers mobile broadband in 34 major metro areas.

Today also marks Cingular's complete absorption of the AT&T Wireless network. Cingular, which is a JV between AT&T and BellSouth, acquired AT&T Wireless in October 2004. According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, Cingular faced a challenge in integrating the AT&T Wireless network, which produced many consumer complaints before the merger, over dropped calls and the like.

For more on Cingular's 3G rollout and complete absorption of AT&T Wireless:
- see this WSJ article (sub. req.)