The Real Scoop on AT&T U-Verse

18 09 2010

AT&T U-verse Review

by Superforce Newsvine

Okay, so everybody is finding out about this new TV, Internet, and Home Phone service called U-verse from AT&T, right?  The boxes (nodes) which bring the signal to your local neighborhoods are spreading throughout the county.  With prices at competitive rates, and the demand for better and faster technology growing, many people are switching over to U-verse.

But, exactly how dependable is it??  Let’s talk about some pros and cons-


The signal is tremendously stronger and fiber optic (essentially glass cables that are ran underground to bring you a better resolution and signal for crystal clear picture).  But they don’t run Fiber to the unit.

Fiber is only ran to the neighborhood (except in some of the newer development in New Japan) in Miami (this is what is called Fiber-to-the-node).  Those big beige boxes that you have been seeing the AT&T trucks working on, those are nodes, where the signal and fiber runs to.

From a node, signal is brought to your house or unit using existing copper wires, ones that were once, Southern Bell lines, which AT&T recently bought out (economically-speaking).


Anywhere from 99.00 to 237.00 for all three service, AT&T offers “solutions”, which are (in essence) TV Channel Preferences, Internet Speed necessity, and Phone Lines.

A good package runs you about 147.00 for all three services, with 60% of the Movie Channels. All except HBO.


AT&T’s regular standard signal is 720p, which is Comcast’s High-Def signal resolution.   U-verse’s HD, is actually 1080i, not “p”.  So depending on your equipment, 1080p may be the better quality, therefore making the U-verse 1080i, one notch lower in quality.


The modem they give you (called a Gateway) is developed by Cisco systems and was specially designed to be compatible with fiber optic networking, a first of it’s kind.  It is the brain of the entire U-verse system.  It brings in the signal for your TV, Internet (with 4 Network Connection Ports/ethernet), and also powers the VOip Digital Telephone service.  If you have AT&T DSL, this is twice as fast, and more.

Another thing about nodes (and quality) is the Internet’s signal strength.  One thing I always used to tell my customers, was a little inside tip I received from a technician, one day stopping for a coffee break, and just taking it easy in the South Florida sun.

Technician:  “We have to pump enough signal for it be able to reach up to 1 mile from these nodes.  In order to be able to push that much signal through these wires, we have to give it a lot of juice. ” – says My New Pal.

He continues, saying-  “That means, that if the customer at the end of this grid line wants to pay for the biggest package and fastest internet, and he wants 32Mbps, we are going to have to pump like 100Mbps through that line jsut to be able to reach that last customer, and it’s almost sometimes impossible to tweak and precisely control that kind of power stream!”


That people living closer to the node, may get away paying for only 12Mbps of Internet Speed ( The MAX Package), but they’ll most likely receive like 30Mbps of speed on the house, due to this phenomenon!


YES! YOU CAN GET ANOTHER SERVICE FOR CHEAPER.  But you cannot get (in some neighborhoods) the speed U-verse has.  The signal for Hi-Def might be 1080i, as opposed to Direct TV’s 1080p, but on the up-side, you won’t lose signal because of a little storm cloud or a sudden rise of gusty winds.

Some channels that certain satellite providers contain, U-verse does not currently have on their network of channels they provide.  but inside info, is that many channels are being internally requested (even I used to request them after sales call if I had a customer that was bargaining with that as his decision-maker), but requesting the channels is not a gurantee they will be supplied.

Channels like TV Caracol, TV Chile, The Dutch Channel, TVe,  and a few others.

If you live close to a node, you may benefit more than your other neighbors who live further down the line.  You’ll have your own dedicated line for Internet, as opposed to Comcast’s DSL (which is on one shared line which you share with all your neighbors on that same line; the reason why your speeds fluctuate from hour to hour, and it sucks).

Finally, the phone service, well it’s VOip, that’s all I gotta say.  Some people like it, if it’s a luxury.  Other people who might be helpless if the power goes out and they lose their signal, may not like this feature.

It does come with a battery backup pack, but if the power goes out, and the modem goes out, the phone gets knocked off.  Unless you have a generator, you will lose your services in a blackout.  The U-verse and AT&T company nodes, and central offices, have generators and battery backups, and this mean even during blackouts, they are still streaming signal.  It just depends on you, how demanding your needs are for these service.
CHOOSE WISELY, and if you would like Special Promotions for U-verse, please leave your email and check your availability, with the author of this post, be leaving a comment or by email.



11 responses

7 08 2012
Ron sallier

How can I locate the node and it’s distance from my house ? Hi getting u- verse installed for just Internet wednesday 8/8/12 thx

10 08 2012


Best case scenario would be to pull up to an AT&T truck in your area and ask one of your local technicians. They know whether it is FTTN or FTTU (fiber-to-the node & fiber-to-the-unit).

Some neighborhoods have nodes on every other block. They would be the node that looks like the one in the picture with doors that swing open like a cabinet…usually a tanned color upright rectangular box the about 5-6 foot high, usually along the line sight of powerlines. It will definitely be one of the newest boxes, so they should be easily recognizable.



6 05 2014

Hi Ron,

The following link should be a good way to start.
Exact locations may vary from town to town.

Also, keep in mind, the further at the end of the line you are, the less signal you will get. So if you somewhere between the node and the end of the line, you are probably going to get more than you paid for because they “pump” a lot to be able to reach the end customers.

Hope it help!

24 06 2013
Uverse Promo codes

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6 11 2013


6 05 2014

Ok all bs aside would I like AT&T, I want cable that doesn’t show the same stuff day after day or I have more channels. Would I be happy with AT&T or not……….

6 05 2014


Well, I will say BOTH companies NOW (compared to when this article was written) are doing great.

The thing about Uverse is their signal gets weaker the further you are from their nodes. The upside is they have a very nice looking and cool user interface and channel guide- very interactive, filled with games and activities, and all-included.
Comcast, however, now is doing very well themselves. With their recent acquisitions, they have grown and become a stronger company.
That said, they are claiming faster speeds than AT&T, so if speed is what you are looking for, this may be the choice.

We cannot decide for you. I suggest you look into the nodes proximity with AT&T and talk with both entities as far as pricing and budgets go, and then using all this knowledge, make you choice.

We hope whomever you choose, you find many moments of joy in your experience!

Thank you for commenting, Larry….

19 06 2015

That description of how internet is “pumped” out of nodes makes absolutely no sense. Internet speed isn’t like water pressure if they have to increase signal strength for distance it has nothing to do with download speed. If you’re paying for 12 down you will absolutely not be getting more access “on the house” because that is simply not how the processing works. The pipe going into your house is capable of at the very least 100meg and the node you’re connected to is what’s limiting your speed no the copper or fiber line between you and worst distance from the node will simply increase packet loss due to intereference en route but AT&T is just going to say “well 12 mbps is a max not a guarantee, sorry”. This post is uninformed drivel.

19 06 2015

Thanks for your opinion, Spencer.
However, keep in mind you are replying to a post from 2010 and this information may no longer relevant.
Also, at the time, the source for this information was an actual AT&T technician installing services and with direct connection to corporate and field operations. Sorry to say that this creditable source holds more value than what you are implying.
As for how the technology works, the term “pumped” is a hypothetical.
Clearly signals are not water- but in regards to how the infrastructure works, it is very similar.
Increasing signal speed could mean adding more powerful devices, routers, transmitters, wires, etc. For the sake of keeping the article simple enough for people to benefit from it instead of being washed with technical jargon, this was written in this way.
We will approve your comment and allow it to post as it still offers some insight and could be found helpful to those who wish to take your opinion into consideration.


9 04 2017

Thank you for the info on uverse. I’m thinking about getting uverse, what is the best package, and for how long if it’s a promotion.

9 04 2017

Hi Patty,

I’m not sure I can speak to the packages anymore due to the time that has elapsed since the post was written.
Nevertheless, I will say that there are a few other options out there now.
For example Verizon and Google are starting to build a broader infrastructure and they are fiber optic providers. Their speeds are incredible and the prices are actually not bad and even cheaper than AT&T.

I would check their website to see if they’ve already reached your area and if so, hop on that while the service is young. Many people still haven’t been reached by those providers, so I say, if you have that opportunity, take it, so you can get grandfathered into a plan before they are nationwide and start raising their prices.
Otherwise, do a comparison of the providers that do provide service in your area, inquire about how they actually give you service. As the article says, last time I checked, they only provide those (highly advertised) speeds only to the neighborhoods and then use the copper lines already installed by the old Bell companies to reach your unit/house- making it not-so fast anymore. Maybe they’ve fixed that restriction, so get someone on the phone in customer service (or even technical support) that can speak on the actual details. If they are still using a shared wire for the whole neighborhood or building, instead of a dedicated line from the node directly to your box, I say keep exploring the other options first.
As they say, knowledge is power!

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