ORANGEBURG, NY — Verizon Wireless, operator of the nation's most reliable wireless network, has completed a $475 million investment for 2004 to further enhance the company's network in the New York Metro area. The multi-million dollar annual investment included updating cell sites and other technology to improve call quality, increase coverage areas and allow a variety of advanced services such as wireless broadband computing, text and video messaging and other applications.
With additional major enhancements scheduled to continue through 2005, Verizon Wireless has invested more than $1 billion over a five-year period in regional network upgrades alone.
"This is another huge investment to better serve our customers. We're not letting up in our mission to keep delivering the nation's most reliable wireless network," said Charles Hand, regional president. "The New York Metro region is an especially important market due to its high concentration of corporate and business customers and tech-savvy consumers. We're working hard and investing millions every month to be able to satisfy the ever-growing demand for the latest wireless technology."
Network upgrade highlights for 2004 and scheduled for 2005 include the following:
- Increased call-handling capacity at 1,000 cell sites throughout the region to ensure that the company stays ahead of growing customer demand for voice and data services, like two-way text messaging, picture messaging, downloadable applications including ringtones and games, and wireless Internet access.
- Added 76 new cell sites across the region, increasing both coverage and capacity. Additional cell sites are scheduled to be built at an even more aggressive pace in 2005.
- Added coverage and capacity at Madison Square Garden and in New York City for the Republican National Convention.
- Added new sites and extra capacity near college campuses, including Rutgers University.
- Installed 12 additional generators, ensuring that the vast majority of Verizon Wireless cell sites have back-up power to keep the network operating during commercial power outages.
- Invested $160 million to upgrade and expand network mobile switching centers in the region.
Verizon Wireless expanded its BroadbandAccess network to New York City and Newark Liberty International Airport and surrounding towns in 2004, and to La Guardia and JFK International airports and additional counties in New Jersey in January 2005. The company also has deployed BroadbandAccess in additional markets nationwide and now offers the nation's fastest, commercially available mobile high-speed wide-area service in more than 30 markets including: Atlanta; Austin, TX; Baltimore; Boston; Chicago; Cincinnati; Columbus, OH; Dallas/Ft. Worth; Dayton, OH; Hartford, CT; Houston; Jacksonville, FL; Kansas City, KS/MO; Las Vegas; Los Angeles; Madison, WI; Miami/Fort Lauderdale, FL; Milwaukee; New Haven, CT; New Orleans; New York City; Newark, NJ; Orlando, FL; Philadelphia; Phoenix; Pittsburgh; Providence, RI; San Diego; Tampa, FL; Washington, D.C. and; West Palm Beach, FL. Continued rollouts are planned in 2005 across the country.
Last year, Verizon Wireless' cross-country team of real-life test men and women made more than 3.6 million calls and traveled more than 1.2 million miles nationwide, testing the Verizon Wireless network on the most frequently traveled roadways. The company's reputation for having the most reliable national wireless network is based on network studies performed by these real-life test men and women who inspired the company's national television advertising campaign.
Test Man Ride-Along Program
The specially-equipped Verizon Wireless vehicles simultaneously test eight wireless providers, using a computerized program to generate phonically diverse "conversations" as well as data transmissions. Members of the media interested in setting up an interview or ride-along with a local member of the Verizon Wireless team of real-life test men and women may contact David Samberg at 845-365-7212 or via e-mail at email@example.com.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless owns and operates the most reliable nationwide 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.