PITTSBURGH, PA — Verizon Wireless announced today it spent a quarter of a billion dollars in 2004 to enhance the company's digital network in Pennsylvania by adding and upgrading 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.
Verizon Wireless has invested more than $500 million over a four-year period on western and central Pennsylvania network upgrades alone.
"This is another huge investment, but we're not easing up in our mission to keep delivering the most reliable wireless network in Pennsylvania," said Roger Tang, presidentOhio/Pennsylvania Region, Verizon Wireless. "Pennsylvania is an especially important market because we see continuous customer growth and an ever-increasing demand for the latest wireless technology. We're working hard and investing a lot to bring the best of it all here."
Network upgrade highlights for 2004 include:
- Approximately 40 new cell sites were added across western and central Pennsylvania in 2004, increasing the coverage area to nearly 27,000 square miles-67 percent of the state's inhabitable landmass-and to more than 92 percent of the state's population.
- New and upgraded cell sites in 2004 expanded coverage on college campuses such as Clarion, Edinboro, Slippery Rock and East Stroudsburg universities as well as the University of Pittsburgh's and Penn State University's main and branch campuses.
In addition to improving new services and everyday wireless calling coverage, the Verizon Wireless network investment is designed to enhance public safety. In addition to improving new services and everyday wireless calling coverage, the Verizon Wireless network investment is designed to enhance public safety. Current Verizon Wireless statistics related to 2004 public safety issues and network performance include:
- Nearly 90 percent of Verizon Wireless cell sites in Western and Central Pennsylvania have their own backup generators to keep the network operating during power outages.
"During the past year in Pennsylvania, we experienced a 45 percent increase in volume on our network," Tang said. "Our continued investment underscores our ongoing commitment to meet the growing needs of our customers and to provide them with the high quality of service they expect from Verizon Wireless."
Test Man Ride-Along ProgramThe specially equipped Verizon Wireless test vehicles simultaneously test multiple wireless providers, using a computerized program to generate phonically diverse "conversations" as well as 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, contact Laura Merritt at 614-560-2605 or via email at Laura.Merritt@verizonwireless.com.
About Verizon WirelessVerizon 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.####