Cell Carriers Bring 'Small-Cell' Tech to Twin Cities Ahead of Super Bowl

Cell Carriers Bring 'Small-Cell' Tech to Twin Cities Ahead of Super Bowl

November 01, 2017 12:42 PM

When football flans flock to Minnesota for the Super Bowl, they should still be able to talk, tweet and text without problems.

That's because of new cell phone technology being installed around the Twin Cities. It's called "small-cell" technology, but it could make a big difference when it comes to cell service.


"Verizon engineers have been working tirelessly for the last two years adding small cells and actually doubling what we have in the Twin Cities," said Verizon Executive Director of Network Assurance Diana Scudder.

Super Bowl fans are expected to use an incredible amount of data. At last year's game in Houston, wireless customers used 11 terabytes of data, according to Verizon.

The company said that's double the total data usage from 2015, and it's projected to grow seven-fold through 2019.

That's where the small-cells come in.

Small boxes attached to already-existing utility polls in densely populated areas complement existing infrastructure and allow phones to function as they should.

It's not just Verizon's network either.

It's all of the major carriers, according to state representative Marion O'Neill, R-Maple Lake, who wrote recently-passed legislation regulating small-cell technology.

She said it will result in companies leaving the tech in Minnesota long after the Super Bowl has come and gone.

"Data usage is just exploding and this will actually help people do more and do it faster," O'Neill said.

The technology is spreading beyond U.S. Bank Stadium too. O'Neill said it's being added to other parts of the metro expected to attract large crowds.

This story has been updated to clarify the amount of data used by wireless customers at last year's Super Bowl


Josh Rosenthal

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