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U.S. Cellular announces 4G LTE plans for 2011

The nation's sixth largest carrier is officially getting on the 4G bandwagon.

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U.S. Cellular announced today its plans for bringing 4G LTE coverage and cell phones to more than a quarter of its customers in 2011.

The nation's sixth largest mobile operator will roll out 4G service in stages, starting with Iowa, Maine, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Texas, and Wisconsin. 

"In addition to our line-up of cutting-edge devices, customers who switch to U.S. Cellular get unique benefits like faster phone upgrades without continuously signing contracts, and join the happiest customers in wireless," said Mary Dillon, U.S. Cellular's president and CEO, in a statement.

U.S. Cellular plans to expand the speedier network to a total of two dozen markets by the holiday season, continuing to offer more 4G-capable phones through 2012.