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Apple Issues Update Signaling iPhone Compatibility With AT&T's MicroCell

Late last week, Apple issued a "carrier settings" update for iPhone users in the United States. While Apple provides few details on the contents of such updates, MobileCrunch discovered several image files in the new update package that appear to signal the iPhone's compatibility with AT&T's upcoming 3G MicroCell technology. The 3G MicroCell device connects to a user's existing broadband Internet service and provides enhanced 3G voice and data coverage within a 5000 square foot range.

Device Features:

- Enhanced coverage indoors - supports both voice and data up to 5000 square feet.
- Available unlimited minute plans - Individual or Family Plan.
- 3G handset compatible - works with any AT&T 3G Phone.
- Up to 4 simultaneous voice or data users supported.
- Device is secure - cannot be accessed by unauthorized users, easy and secure online management of device settings
- Seamless call hand-over - start calls on your 3G MicroCell and continue uninterrupted even if you leave the building.

Pricing and availability for the device and associated monthly plans have not yet been announced.

AppleInsider recently reported on AT&T's plans to deploy the 3G MicroCell technology and compared their so-called "femtocell" offering to related services provided by other carriers. Sprint's AIRAVE device costs $99.99, with an additional $4.99 monthly access fee and additional optional fees to upgrade to unlimited calling via the device, while Verizon's Network Extender device costs $249.99 upfront with no monthly fee.

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