With the 2012 Republican National Convention (RNC) soon to begin in Tampa Bay (barring any Tropical Storm Isaac-related problems), Verizon Wireless is beefing up its 4G LTE network to help ensure wireless coverage and services for tens of thousands of visiting political newsmakers as well as for local residents and businesses.  Preparations include:

>> New cell sites and the expansion of the 4G LTE network throughout Tampa Bay
>> Installation of cellular base stations and/or in-building distributed antenna systems (DAS) at key RNC venues like the Tampa Bay Times Forum, Tropicana Field and the Tampa Bay Convention Center.
>> The repositioning of antennas to increase permanent capacity.
>> Deployment of Cells on Wheels (COWS), Cells on Light Trucks (COLTS) and generators on trailers (GOaTS) to high-usage areas that need extra 4G LTE and 3G network capacity.
>> Fine-tuning the Verizon Wireless “super-switch” processing center in Tampa Bay, which is designed to withstand a Category 5 hurricane.

Sprint also is at work in Tampa, saying it’s “enhancing capacity and coverage for voice, text messaging and data to serve their round-the-clock needs.” Sprint’s network enhancements in Tampa include:

>> Investing nearly $10 million to augment in-building wireless service and point-to-point coverage as convention attendees move between venues.
>> Boosting data capacity in downtown Tampa network by 25 percent by adding five permanent macrocell sites.
>> Deploying a COW near the Tampa Bay Convention Center to enhance capacity and coverage for voice, data and text messaging along Bayshore Boulevard.
>> Installing voice and data carriers to 41 existing Tampa-area cell sites, and installing an outdoor cell site between the Tampa Bay Convention Center and Tampa Bay Times Forum.
>> Supplying to each official convention venue a Distributed Antenna System (DAS) to provide in-building coverage and dedicated capacity. It also is providing Tropicana Field – the location of the convention’s kickoff event – a DAS to enhance wireless coverage and capacity.

Finally, Cisco was named the "Official Network Technology Partner" for the 2012 Republican National Convention. The company installed, configured and provided operational support for switching and routing the convention’s core network infrastructure, including WAN, VoIP, wireless access points and real-time network monitoring. Cisco also will assist in decommissioning the gear when the convention ends Aug. 30.

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