On Friday, the Inauguration of the 45th President of the United States will be taking place in Washington, DC, and as is the case with most Inaugurations, there will be thousands if not millions of people in the DC area for the entire weekend. Which is why AT&T has been working to boost the LTE capacity of their network in the Washington DC area before the big day. T-Mobile also announced earlier this week that they boosted their capacity and announced that the capacity was going to be permanent and not just for the Inauguration of President-Elect Donald Trump.
In a press release, AT&T announced that they invested $15 million in the Washington DC area, which has resulted in a 400% capacity boost for their LTE network. Their work included over 50 network engineers who worked in various stages from planning to deployment. AT&T is placing 7 Super COWs (Cell on Wheels) in the two-mile-long National Mall. AT&T noted that these COWs are "equipped with our newest, highest-capacity antenna, the Drum Set Antenna, which provides 20x more LTE capacity compared to a traditional cell site." They are also using a Giant Eyeball Antenna, and this is a pretty important part of the capacity, as it is a spherical shaped antenna which engineers can use to distribute data traffic based on where the consumption is taking place in the crowd. Additionally, AT&T installed and/or upgraded 20 Distributed Antenna System (DAS) at various hotels and airports in Washington DC. Finally, AT&T has made 20 permanent LTE upgrades at cell sites that are servicing the National Mall area. This includes multi beam antenna technology.
AT&T is making sure that their customers are ready and able to use their data during the Inauguration events of President-Elect Donald Trump on Friday. Now these changes that AT&T has made in Washington DC aren't just because it's Inauguration weekend, but it's something that carriers like AT&T do at various venues that are holding big events. For instance, at the Super Bowl every year, carriers are bringing in COWs and extra capacity so that everyone at the Super Bowl can Tweet, share pictures and video all without seeing a dip in their coverage. So if you are heading to Washington DC to see Donald Trump get sworn in as the 45th President of the United States, you won't need to worry about coverage and data speeds.