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AT&T Upgrades Consumer DSL Speeds

Dow Jones reports that AT&T is preparing to double the speed of its consumer broadband Internet service to 6 million bits per second this week in some markets, said Rick Lindner, AT&T's chief financial officer.

The 6 Mbps service was previously available only to business customers. AT&T's move to raise the speed of its digital subscriber line (DSL) service comes after other telephone companies such as BellSouth raised speeds to 6 Mbps. Facing competition from cable companies, which generally offer high-speed Internet service, carriers have made their product more appealing by slashing prices and, more recently, raising speeds.

Lindner said that about 35 percent of new retail customers and 50 percent of business customers are initially opting to sign up for faster service. Customers are also migrating to higher speeds, he said. AT&T currently offers broadband service for as low as $12.99 a month for 1.5 Mbps. Service for higher speeds was $39.95 a month for one year.

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