You might have seen the “It’s Not Complicated” AT&T ads with the little kids sitting around the table. The grown up (a grup as some would call him) asks “What’s better bigger or smaller? What would you rather have a big tree house or small tree house?” “Bigger!” the little voices yell and give all kinds of terrific reasons from it could have a disco to there would be room for a huge flat screen TV.
Bigger is the same strategy AT&T used as it pumped nearly $650 million into Detroit’s wireless and wireline networks from 2010 to 2012. The company says the investment expanded its 4G LTE mobile Internet coverage and enhanced the overall performance of its networks.
It’s a pretty important “bigger.” People in Detroit increasingly depend on mobile connections for communication, entertainment and productivity at work, at home and at play. And, as more people come to Detroit to live, work and play the demand will surely grow with all of those iPhone, Androids, and other gadgets. Great coverage will be expected and demanded.
“Across Detroit, this robust investment in the AT&T wireless and wireline networks is important to spurring the economy and creating jobs,” said Jim Murray, president, AT&T Michigan. “In our wireless world, mobile and broadband networks create economic opportunities for health care, manufacturing, education, transportation and public safety and virtually every other economic sector.”
The Detroit Marriott Renaissance Center is getting some upgrades, too. There’s a new 4G LTE-capable Distributed Antenna System (DAS). That kind of system provides better wireless coverage to people indoors or outdoors where a building or other obstacles could impact wireless service.
Over the past three years AT&T says its investment has delivered stronger network performance and offers the following as proof:
- The AT&T wireless network recently ranked No. 1 in Detroit by RootMetrics®, an independent research and testing organization. AT&T was named the RootMetrics RootScore® Combined Award winner for its combination of call quality, text performance, and mobile Internet speed. The RootMetrics award is the result of more than 50,036 wireless test calls, texts and mobile Internet transmissions conducted during November of 2012.
- The AT&T network kept 99 percent of all Detroit-area wireless calls connected in the fourth quarter of 2012 (October through December).
- The AT&T 4G LTE network has been nationally recognized for its speed and coverage. AT&T 4G LTE delivered faster average download speeds than any of the competitors in PCWorld’s most recent 13-market speed tests.
- The telecommunications industry analyst firm Frost and Sullivan awarded AT&T its North American Mobile Network Strategy Award for the second year in a row in 2012.
“We know the mobile Internet has become central to our customers’ lives, and we’re committed to driving both investment and innovation to deliver the best possible experience over the AT&T network,” said Brian Ducharme, vice president and general manager for AT&T Michigan and Indiana. “While third-party and internal testing shows that these investments are paying off with excellent service for Detroit customers, we are continually planning and deploying network enhancements to improve service in the future.”
In 2012 AT&T added more than 600 wireless network upgrades in Detroit including activating new cell sites, adding capacity, upgrading cell sites to provide fast 4G LTE mobile Internet speeds, deploying high-capacity Ethernet connections to cell sites and adding or upgrading Distributed Antenna Systems. Those systems boost wireless coverage and capacity in buildings and at major venues like convention halls or sports arenas. It also launched 4G LTE in the Detroit area last September. It offers faster mobile Internet speeds — up to 10 times faster than 3G — and improved performance on a variety of mobile smartphones and tablets.
“Broadband access is a priority we often hear about, no matter the location, because it is such a powerful driver for economic development,” said State Representative Thomas Stallworth III. “This investment by AT&T to expand its mobile Internet network will help more people and businesses stay connected in today’s fast-moving technological world.”
Here’s a little more information for you geeks and data guys out there. AT&T’s three-year Project Velocity IP (VIP) will expand and enhance its wireless and wired IP broadband networks. As part of Project VIP, AT&T plans to increase the density of its wireless network by deploying more than 10,000 macro sites, more than 1,000 distributed antenna systems, and more than 40,000 small cells.
AT&T also plans to expand the wired IP broadband network to cover 75 percent of locations in our service area. Nationally, they’re expanding the fiber network to reach one million more business locations as well as increase 4G coverage to cover more than 300 million people across the country.