Verizon sets aside funds for 4G upgrade

Austin will be brought up to speed soon.

Verizon Wireless announced Monday it invested $132 million in 2011 to enhance its network in Minnesota, which includes expanding its 4G LTE network to Austin, Albert Lea, Duluth, St. Cloud and Rochester as well as more communities in the greater Twin Cities area. The expansion will give more Minnesotans access to the 4G LTE network.

The company’s investment to support Minnesota’s infrastructure required for economic development and business growth included:

—Adding new cell sites and upgrading equipment on existing cell sites to increase coverage and capacity of the company’s voice and data network.

—Prepping the backbone of the network to deploy 4G LTE at urban and rural locations across the state.

“We know Minnesotans depend on their smartphones, tablets, laptop modems and other wireless devices to stay connected, to be more productive and for entertainment,” said Seamus Hyland, president–Great Plains Region for Verizon.

The Verizon Wireless 4G LTE network is available in 195 U.S. markets and covers more than 200 million people, according to a Verizon press release. Full nationwide deployment of the company’s 4G LTE network is scheduled to be complete by the end of 2013.

Verizon Wireless has invested more than $70 billion since it was formed to increase the coverage and capacity of its premier nationwide networks and to add new services. Since 2001, Verizon Wireless has invested more than $846 million in its network in Minnesota.

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