GAINESVILLE, FL — To provide the best wireless service for businesses, residents and visitors throughout Alachua County, Verizon Wireless has expanded its digital network here by constructing two new advanced digital cell sites in Newberry.
The new sites process both voice calls and wireless data traffic and are designed to provide stronger wireless coverage and additional call capacity for neighboring residents and businesses throughout the downtown area of Newberry. The sites also strengthen coverage along State Road 26 between Gainesville and Newberry. The new sites represent Verizon Wireless' continuing investment and growth in Florida. In 2004, the company spent more than $220 million in the state to further expand and enhance its all-digital network.
This aggressive network investment now totaling more $800 million during the past four years in Florida alone ensures that Verizon Wireless will continue to stay ahead of growing demand for wireless voice and data services like Picture Messaging and Internet access in the state. Additionally, these improvements fortify the Verizon Wireless network to ensure operations during events such as last year's unprecedented hurricane season.
The Verizon Wireless network in Florida withstood the impact of four hurricanes in 2004 and remained on air while landlines and other wireless providers faltered. Throughout Florida, nearly 80 percent of all Verizon Wireless sites have their own back-up generator in addition to battery power to keep the network running even when the power supply is interrupted.
Verizon Wireless supplied thousands of wireless phones and millions of free minutes to public safety agencies and emergency operations centers from Palm Beach County to Pensacola, providing one of the only means of communication to many areas affected by the 2004 hurricanes.
The company also set up free calling centers in devastated areas, providing thousands of phone calls and more than one million free minutes for hurricane survivors to call loved ones, and contact insurance companies and relief organizations.
"These new sites in Newberry can help improve public safety in many emergency situations," said Mike Lanman, Florida region president for Verizon Wireless. "But every day it also allows us to meet the growing needs of businesses and consumers calling co-workers and friends, sending Picture Messages, checking emails and so much more."
The newest high-speed data service from Verizon Wireless is BroadbandAccess, which provides average transfer speeds of 400-700 kbps. Verizon Wireless already has rolled out BroadbandAccess in Florida markets such as Jacksonville, Orlando, Tampa Bay, Tallahassee and South Florida, with additional enhancements scheduled for 2005 and 2006.
About Verizon Wireless' Network Investment
Over the last four years, Verizon Wireless has invested about a billion dollars every 90 days more than $16 billion in its nationwide network, offering customers access to the most extensive wireless voice and data network in the United States. Local investment makes it possible to offer Florida customers the most reliable service available on the nation's largest wireless network. The company's most reliable network claim is based on network studies performed by real-life test men and test women who inspired the company's national "Can you hear me now? Good.®" advertising campaign. They conduct more than 300,000 calls monthly on the Verizon Wireless network and other national wireless carriers' networks while traveling over 100,000 miles across Florida including Alachua County in specially-equipped, company-owned quality test vehicles.
Test Man Ride-Along Program
The specially equipped Verizon Wireless test vehicles simultaneously test seven wireless providers, using a computerized program to generate phonically diverse "conversations" and data transmissions Members of the media who are 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, please contact Chuck Hamby at 813-615-4803 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 47.4 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.