4G networks are the new craze among mobile device enthusiasts. Offering lightning fast speeds, they are clearly the next frontier in the mobile market. While other carriers have their own 4G networks, AT&T is going to be joining them in 2011 with an expected potential of reaching 70-75 million people by the end of 2011.

AT&T has said it wanted to wait for the LTE market to mature before moving forward with a full-scale deployment. Stankey said AT&T is working on a different kind of implementation for LTE than other carriers, and needs to carry forward its UMTS services to ensure that voice and data services can work simultaneously on both UMTS and LTE. The company is spending $700 million in capital expenditures on LTE this year and “will go far beyond that” in 2011, Stankey said.

AT&T is even going as far as already looking beyond HSPA 7.2 and pushing forward with HSPA+ on it’s way to a 4G network. HSPA+ will offer real world speeds of 7 Mbps, which is noticeably faster than the real-world speeds offered under the HSPA standard.

[Via IntoMobile]