As pretty much everyone knows, the east coast of the U.S. was struck by a pretty huge storm, Hurricane Sandy, the last couple of days. The damage has been catastrophic in parts of New York City and the state of New Jersey.
Today, AT&T and T-Mobile have announced they will be sharing their wireless networks among customers from companies in an effort to help those affected by Hurricane Sandy. Being down in that area today, I can tell you, it's really ugly. It's almost near impossible to get signal on our phones so this news comes extremely welcome to those in the disaster areas.
Nothing special is required from customers to be able to access the other company's network as each device will simply connect to whatever network is the strongest there at the time. This is the first time a collaboration between these two major wireless carriers occurs. AT&T and T-Mobile both share the same GSM-based technology, which enabled this agreement to be possible.
This is pretty cool because this is not a simple roaming agreement, which would entail using another network's towers when your network doesn't have signal. Instead, this agreement allows you to use the other carrier's network if it's stronger, even if in that area you do have some type of service.
No word on how long this agreement will last between the two companies, but we're definitely glad to see this type of collaboration in time of need.
Well done, Ma Bell and Magenta!