TAMPA, FL — The match up for professional football's Big Game at Raymond James Stadium is finally set, and fans from Pittsburgh, Arizona and around the world are now flocking to Florida. But Verizon Wireless network teams have been preparing all year long to ensure their own championship performance for the Big Game with millions of dollars in network upgrades in and around the stadium and across Tampa Bay.
A variety of the latest high-tech wireless equipment was permanently installed throughout the stadium and in the light towers hundreds of feet above the ground, and an advanced in-building system was deployed throughout the stadium's inner spaces. Plus, voice and high-speed data channels were expanded in more than 50 digital transmission sites located throughout downtown Tampa, near the stadium and in all the areas where game-related activities will take place.
In addition, during Big Game activities throughout Tampa Bay, Verizon Wireless will deploy a full team of dedicated techs inside and outside Raymond James, as well as rolling out the most powerful COLT (Cell On Light Truck) in the company's Florida fleet. The high-tech vehicle features a 75-foot telescoping antenna and multiple voice and high-speed data channels, each of which can handle hundreds of phone calls and data transmissions simultaneously. At the height of the super football spectacle, Verizon Wireless expects millions of successful connections per hour on its Florida digital network.
"Our Florida network will have hundreds of thousands fans and journalists from around the world making calls, sending photo and video messages, connecting with aircards to file reports and blogs, navigating around town with their phones and using many other wireless applications," said Frank Wise, Verizon Wireless network director. "But we've been in the big game before and are prepared to perform like champs for visitors and local businesses and residents."
Wireless network teams here successfully handled the World Series in Tampa Bay this past autumn, and often are called upon for top performances at other high-profile Florida activities such as the upcoming Daytona 500, baseball's Spring Training, college Spring Break, professional and college big games, worldwide tourist attractions and many other events.
Verizon Wireless invested more than $155 million in its Florida network in 2008 to ensure the most advanced and reliable service for local customers and visitors. This investment included a $20 million enhancement to the company's Tampa Bay digital switching facility, as well as the completion of the Verizon Wireless 3G high-speed wireless network throughout the state. Since its inception, Verizon Wireless has invested nearly $2 billion in its Florida network.
The high-speed network allows advanced services such as V CAST - in which customers can stream video clips, play cutting-edge 3D games and download full song tracks over the air; and use VZ Navigator(SM) - a location-based service offering maps, audible driving directions, traffic updates, gas station locations and current pricing. This technology also enables customers to wirelessly access their e-mail and calendars, the Internet and other information anytime, anywhere via a secure connection with the company's Mobile Broadband service. Mobile Broadband offers average download speeds of 600 kilobits per second (kbps) to 1.4 megabits per second and upload speeds of 500-800 kbps, which means being able to upload or download a 1 Megabyte e-mail attachment - the equivalent of a small PowerPoint(R) presentation or a large PDF file - in less than two seconds.
For more information on Verizon Wireless technologies, visit www.verizonwireless.com.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation's most reliable wireless voice and data network, serving 83.7 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with 85,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE:VOD). For more information, visit 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.