Could this be the move that finally makes me get an iPhone? AT&T is purportedly planning on upgrading its wireless network to support the faster HSPA+ protocol, and plans to make the service available to some 250 million customers in 2010.

Currently, I’ve not bought an iPhone due to the crappy AT&T wireless service in my neck of the woods. Truthfully, I’ve been holding out for a Verizon-based Apple phone. Can AT&T change my mind?

News of the planned network upgrade came from AT&T Operations CEO John Stankey at a Reuters event, reports “Engadget” ( ). This could means lots more iPhone 3GS owners could be able to access Internet-based content faster by the end of the year. And AT&T says it plans to continue working towards its 4G network rollout which is scheduled to begin some time in 2011.

AT&T’s HSPA+ data network upgrade will bring a theoretical maximum 14.4Mbps download speeds to more than 250 million Americans by the end of 2010, notes “Endgadget.” Or at least most users should see download speeds between 7.2Mbps and 14.4Mbps. Currently, the theoretical maximum speed for AT&T’s 3G network is 7.2Mbps.

Of course, AT&T hasn’t offered any details on the HSPA+. So folks like me may still be out of luck. AT&T might simply improve the service in markets where it’s already satisfactory (assuming there are any). I’ll cross my fingers.

— Dennis Sellers