Washington Metro was one of the first markets to get 3G. It got it from the old AT&T Wireless. There were only a dozen or so of those markets. The service was excellent and should still be.
Originally Posted by mtbrown1275
That AT&T Wireless was acquired, along wtih the brand, by Cingular. It is that Cingular that we now think of as AT&T, "the steaming pile of failure." For several years, only those markets acquired with 3G had it. The build out was very slow and the product in New York City, San Francisco, and perhaps other markets, was also very slow.
In fairness to AT&T, I was in lower Manhattan over the weekend. While the three iPads in the conference room could see the WiFi (iBahn) that everyone else was using, we got an error in response to our attempts to login. My Verizon MiFi was painfully slow. I signed up for AT&T 3G on my iPad and it was dramatically faster than Verizon, at least in that location. As the man says, "local coverage trumps everything" and "your mileage may differ."