ALPHARETTA, GA — Just in time for the November 27 UGA-GA Tech game, Verizon Wireless is helping fans "make the call" at the game in Athens and for all future highly-attended events on and around campus. The nation's largest wireless carrier has expanded its PCS network in Clarke County with a cell site enhancement and installed a Cell-On-Wheels (COW) to increase network capacity during game time and handle the high call volume around the UGA stadium and the surrounding area.
The cell tower (appropriately named "Bulldog") with the newly increased capacity is located in Athens and the COW, a fully functional, generator-powered mobile cell site, will be positioned near the stadium to provide increased wireless capacity in the area. The COW has the same call capacity as a freestanding cell site and can handle both CDMA digital calls and wireless data and Internet service. On game days in Athens, the Verizon Wireless COW typically handles 80 wireless calls per second.
"On autumn Saturdays in Athens, our network traffic rivals Atlanta's network traffic during evening rush hour," says Jim McGean, Verizon Wireless Georgia/Alabama region president. "With so many fans converging on such a small area, not to mention media, public safety officers, stadium personnel and the university athletic department staff themselves, there a significant increase in wireless activity over what we would normally see. Fans need to rely on their wireless phones to locate friends in the parking lot, make plans to meet after the game, and call for help if there is an emergency. The cell site enhancement and the COW gives us the ability to make sure we have enough capacity to handle those calls and provide the quality of service our customers and Bulldog fans -- expect."
With the newly increased capacity, customers in the Athens area that have taken advantage of the company's America's Choice plan will enjoy greater access to a network that covers 90 percent of the U.S. population, with no roaming or long-distance charges. Further, Verizon Wireless relies solely upon CDMA technology considered one of the most reliable wireless communications platforms for enhanced clarity and dependability.
"We are committed to providing the best service to our customers no matter when and where they need service," says McGean. "Verizon Wireless invested nearly $1 billion in the South Area alone in 2003 and we've invested millions throughout 2004. This investment is in direct response to the remarkable growth in the demand for our wireless service. We will continue to answer the call of our customers to expand our network and deliver the highest-quality, most technologically advanced digital network possible."
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 42.1 million voice and data customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.