AT&T unveils U-verse TV, internet service for Shreveport-Bossier - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

AT&T unveils U-verse TV, internet service for Shreveport-Bossier area

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(Photo source: Erin Buchanan/KTBS 3 News) (Photo source: Erin Buchanan/KTBS 3 News)

"U-verse is TV like you've never seen it before."

And like we've never had before, at least not in Shreveport-Bossier.

AT&T unveiled its U-verse TV service at their Beene Boulevard store location, the first real competition for Comcast cable in recent memory.

"From a technology perspective, the internet protocol allows us to do multiple things," explains Bob Sellman, AT&T's Director of Sales for West Louisiana, who led the demonstration.

But the most dazzling display of technology is basically useless without reliable service, a serious concern for the Louisiana Public Service Commission.

Bill Robertson, Executive Assistant to District 5 Commissioner Foster Campbell, says reliable high-speed internet has become closer to a necessity than a luxury.

"Internet today is your entrance to health care, to business, to entertainment, to communicating with your loved ones in faraway places," Robertson says.

He adds that there are still some unanswered questions about the U-verse service, "how far will they go? How rural will they go? Will people in the country be able to get to it?"

AT&T reps say it's their fiber optic network that sets them apart, along with an integration of at-your-fingertips technologies.

As for local elected officials at Monday's announcement, they say it means their consituents have another avenue to explore.

"People nowadays have so many interests, so therefore, consequently, a person could follow [Uverse] to avoid that conflict of a simultaneous showing of a [tv show]," says District 9 State Rep. Henry Burns. "I'm excited about it."

"I'm rather familiar with AT&T, having spent 22 years in telecommunication engineering, so I understand the importance of having a good signal, and what you're actually paying for, as well as the dependability of it," District 2 State Rep. Roy Burrell says.

"Anytime we're able to get another reputable company that comes in to provide service to our customers, then I think it's so important that we give them an opportunity and see where they go," Burrell adds.

AT&T says their economic footprint is evident, hiring about 80 technicians during the process of expanding their network in Shreveport-Bossier.

The company says more than $204 million in state and local taxes was generated by AT&T across Louisiana in 2012.

While access to U-verse is just a few clicks away for many local residents, others may have to wait for the service to expand to their area.

To find out if U-verse is available at your address, click here.

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