(Photo by Stephen Babcock)
AT&T has been visible in the region in recent months, and on Tuesday the communications company provided some numbers behind efforts to boost its network over three years in Maryland.
AT&T said it invested nearly $450 million in both wireless and wired upgrades for Maryland from 2016 to 2018. These were designed to boost reliability, coverage and speed.
When it comes to its wireless network specifically, AT&T said it made 1,355 upgrades in 2018. These included new cell sites and internet connections, as well as added network capacity.
Along with residential users, the company also said its upgrades help the business community.
“We’re investing in our network to make continued business growth possible; keep Maryland competitive; support public safety; and provide the state’s residents and visitors with the tools to stay connected and entertained,” Denis Dunn, president ofAT&T Maryland, said in a statement.
AT&T is involved in public safety connectivity improvements through a public-private partnership on infrastructure called FirstNet. It’s setting up new cell sites to add connectivity in places like this Baltimore County area, and deploying LTE spectrum specifically set aside for public safety officials and first responders called Band 14.
The company has also been vocal about working with local officials to set up mobile broadband technology called small cells, which are often affixed to light poles. Along with helping current technology, company officials have said small cells can provide a foundation for 5G. AT&T officials said earlier this year that sites have already been established in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and Ocean City’s boardwalk. Legislation was introduced during the 2019 General Assembly session that would’ve regulated the technology, but ultimately did not pass.
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