AT&t, Verizon announced plans Monday to build up a network of Internet hotspot hotspots in a bid to boost broadband speeds and provide better service for those using Internet at home.
The wireless company said it would buy 10,000 hotspots for $10 per square mile and deploy them in its service areas, as well as in its homes, offices and retail locations.
The plans represent a significant expansion of Internet infrastructure for wireless carriers that are struggling to expand their reach and improve their customer experience.
The $100 million investment, which comes on top of a $200 million investment the wireless carrier made in 2015, is one of AT&Ts latest moves to improve Internet performance and expand the reach of its services.
It also comes as other carriers, including Verizon and Sprint, are making similar investments.
“The hotspot rollout is a major step forward in our commitment to connect our customers and increase their connectivity and capacity,” AT&ts CEO Randall Stephenson said in a statement.
The company said that it would deploy 10,800 of the hotspots and add the remaining in areas where there are demand for high-speed service.
Stephenson said that the number of Internet users in AT&s service areas will increase from 20 million in 2018 to 25 million in 2020.
He said that more than 4 million people were in AT’s broadband service area at the end of last year.
AT&tt, which also operates the high-definition video service DirecTV Now, also announced that it will expand its Internet speed capabilities.
AT &ts has announced plans to expand its high-def video service.
The telco said that, from the beginning of 2018, customers can download the DirecTv HD service for $5 per month.
AT says it will also deploy the new HD video service on its own video network and in its existing fiber-optic network.
AT has also invested in fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) and fiber-coaxial (FCO) technologies to offer faster Internet speeds.
In January, AT&rt reported that it had increased its fiber network capacity to more than 1.2 million feet of fiber optic cable and added about 600,000 miles of copper wire in 2017.
The carrier is also developing fiber-based Wi-Fi networks for the first time in 2018.
AT plans to build a fiber network that will connect its home Internet service to a network that it has built for a small number of customers.
AT said that its customers will have access to the new Internet service through the company’s Internet Explorer, its browser and other Internet-related apps, and that they will be able to use the new network on their devices.
AT is also making investments in other areas to help provide better broadband service for customers.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is reviewing AT& ts proposal to expand the number and size of wireless service providers and the number, speed and capacity of Wi-fi access points.
The commission said last week that it may issue a final rule before the end to clarify whether the wireless service provider is required to upgrade its networks and how it can do so.
AT, which said that customers will receive the new services free of charge, said it will use the funds to help improve Internet speeds and access.
AT’s announcement comes as the FCC has been considering rules to regulate broadband providers.
Last week, the commission announced that AT& rt, Sprint and Verizon were to participate in the rules review, with AT> and T-Mobile being the other two.
The FCC is expected to make its decision in early 2018.