Work progressing on AT&T data upgrades for RNC

Posted at 7:02 PM, May 24, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-24 19:02:38-04

In planning for a political convention you can get a feel for the number of hotel rooms you'll need based on past conventions, transportation and media workspace the same. What you can't gauge in this day and age: data.

"The technology has just exploded over the last four years," said Christy Moore, AT&T's Area Manager of Network and Process. AT&T is the official data provider for the Republican National Convention.

Moore said the convention is like the Super Bowl times 10, but with many moving pieces in different locations over not just several hours but several days.

Moore is overseeing the upgrades being made to handle the data workload. "We've got a lot of the backbone already built, the underground work for the infrastructure and the fiber lays as well as getting to the venues at this point," she said.

The 2012 conventions in technology terms were light years ago, according to AT&T Ohio President Adam Grzybicki.

"Over the last eight years the data traffic on our network has gone up 150,000 percent," Grzybicki said.

Current work includes tripling the 4G capacity downtown, moving forward on 165 LTE upgrades to cell sites to provide more reliable service and faster download speeds and adding 70,000 feet of new fiber. Things that will remain after the convention leaves making the city more attractive to many tech companies.

"Long term it's actually two-fold," he said. "We have all of this new fiber that we're putting into place... services businesses can utilize long term but then it's also the wireless network that we're building."

"A lot of businesses actually today operate in kind of a mobile environment, they're on iPads, they're on devices. They don't necessarily have the need for kind of a land line environment so either side of kind of the fence you have a robust network that's going to be able to support those types of businesses long term. "