Verizon boosts 4G LTE capacity by 450% ahead of Super Bowl
27 January 2017 | Jason McGee-Abe
Verizon has significantly enhanced its Houston network, increasing wireless data capacity by 450%, ahead of the Super Bowl LI.
Verizon started enhancing its network connectivity at and around the NRG stadium nearly two years ago, boosting network performance in major locations throughout Houston.
The news, which comes after Verizon also upgraded its Washington network by 500% ahead of Donald Trump’s inauguration and reports surfacing today that Verizon is contemplating combining forces with Charter Communications, details that Verizon has built 23 new cell sites and installed over 220 small cells to densify its network, representing two significant permanent investments in Houston.
Capacity has been doubled through major routes in and out of downtown Houston, 24 nodes on wheels (NOWs) have been deployed to increase capacity and coverage. Three-channel carrier-aggregation (LTE Advanced) has been rolled out to boost network peak speeds, which is a further enhancement to the rollout of two-channel aggregation in August, providing 50% greater peak speeds in Houston and in cities nationwide.
“We know people attending the Super Bowl and the incredible events surrounding the game will want to share their experiences with friends and loved ones around the nation, and will use their wireless devices to gather information and navigate throughout Houston and will use their devices to capture every exciting moment of their experience,” said Nicola Palmer, chief network officer for Verizon. “Our engineers have been working tirelessly to ensure our customers have a great wireless experience with Verizon.”
A distributed antenna system (DAS) has been installed in the underground tunnels, which will improve wire service along the more than six mile tunnel route, which is directly connected to a dedicated base station providing high speeds and additional capacity.
The upgrades are strategically placed throughout Houston and have a coverage range of up to 1,000 ft, which will enable more customers to more reliably stream and share video content.
At 2016’s Super Bowl, 7Tb of data was used by attendees during the game and over 68Tb of data throughout the nine-day event.
These investments will benefit customers living in and traveling to Houston, in addition to public safety, well into the future too, adding capacity for web browsing, video streaming, social media posting, and more.
AT&T has also invested $40 million in its network in Houston to increase capacity ahead of the Super Bowl. It has doubled LTE capacity within the stadium itself, across 770 antennas and more than 12 miles of cable.
Back in February 2014, Verizon demonstrated LTE broadcasting at Super Bowl XLVIII after it partnered with the National Football League (NFL) to launch an OTT video network called NFL Now.
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