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Verizon Wireless arrives in southwest Missouri

Discussion in 'Central US Wireless Forum' started by Andy, Jan 29, 2008.

  1. Andy

    Andy Diamond Senior Member
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    Verizon Wireless arrives in southwest Missouri

    Verizon Wireless officials publicizing the company’s long-awaited arrival in the Springfield-Branson market said the Fortune 500 carrier is ready to compete locally after spending $26 million to expand its network into the Ozarks.

    For about a year, the New Jersey-based telecommunications company – a division of Verizon Communications Inc. in New York City – has been acquiring property and installing necessary infrastructure to back up its claim as the “nation’s most reliable network.” Verizon Wireless officially announced its expansion Jan. 25, and local advertisements will begin running this week.

    The expansion puts Verizon in the midst of competitors, including heavy hitters Sprint Nextel, Alltel, T-Mobile and AT&T, who already are entrenched in Springfield.

    Verizon Wireless spokeswoman Cheryl Bini Armbrecht said the new network coverage includes the Springfield metropolitan area, all of Greene County and several surrounding communities, including Branson, Nixa, Ozark, Republic, Willard, Battlefield and Hollister. Verizon Wireless customers also should experience seamless coverage along Interstate 44 from Joplin to St. Louis and around Lake of the Ozarks, Armbrecht said.

    Previously, Verizon Wireless customers living in or traveling through the Springfield area relied on roaming service, she added.

    In 2007, Verizon Wireless installed 89 new cell sites to lay the groundwork for its early 2008 foray into southwest Missouri. About 6 percent of the cell sites were new towers while the rest were collocated antennas on existing buildings or towers, Armbrecht said. On average, Verizon Wireless invests more than $5 billion annually in its network, she said.

    In 2006, the company invested more than $125 million to enhance its digital network in Missouri, Kansas and southern Illinois, where it activated 107 new cell sites and upgraded 1,445 existing ones. Much of the expansion occurred in central Missouri, where the company added 80 cell sites to fill coverage gaps along the Interstate 70 corridor between Kansas City and St. Louis.

    “We are always working to increase our network coverage and reliability, and our expansion throughout southwest Missouri is an important part of this commitment,” said Lou Sigillo, president of the Missouri-Kansas Region for Verizon Wireless, in a news release.

    Next month, Verizon will open its first Springfield store in a retail shopping center under construction at 1155 E. Battlefield Road, at the northwest corner of Battlefield and National Avenue. Retail stores that size are typically staffed with about 10 employees, Armbrecht said. Verizon Wireless also will have a presence in Wal-Mart stores in Branson, Nixa and Marshfield.

    Interactive stations throughout the Battlefield Road store will allow customers to test various cellular phones and wireless gadgets.

    Mark Farnen, a Columbia-based public relations strategist who recently visited Springfield with Armbrecht, said the LC Voyager is particularly popular right now. The wireless device has an interactive touch screen and full keyboard as well as a digital camera and camcorder.

    Verizon also has hired sales manager Kristie Pealer to oversee business-to-business sales in the Springfield market. Pealer will work from her home, Armbrecht said.

    Through Feb. 18, Verizon is offering an airtime incentive for some service activations and renewals. Until the store opens, more information on Verizon’s business-to-business services is available at Verizon.com or by calling (417) 380-0150.

    Springfield Business Journal - Online Edition
     
  2. walkguru

    walkguru Wireless Guru
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    Wirelessly posted (Walkguru's: Opera/9.50 (J2ME/MIDP; Opera Mini/4.0.9800/230; U; en))

    wow thats getting mighty close to me.
     
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