Sprint bolstering network for Super Bowl

Sprint Nextel is bolstering communications networks in Detroit in time for Sunday’s Super Bowl XL, but the added network capacity won’t disappear when the game’s over.

Three wireless networks and a 114-mile fiber-optic network will be in place by game time to serve 100,000 fans converging on the city and 90 million TV viewers, Sprint officials said.

Sprint has completed a data distribution system to support Ford Field, Cobo Hall, the Jose Louis arena and downtown Detroit. Its construction has been under way for a year and will be used on game day primarily to authenticate tickets at the field and remote areas, said John Polivka, a Sprint spokesman.

The fiber-optic capacity and that of the three other networks will stay in place to provide added capacity for Detroit residents and visitors, he said.

In addition, Nextel walkie-talkie service capacity is being increased nearly 300% with the addition of 500 additional base radio transmitters, Sprint said. Also, Sprint’s PCS cellular coverage and capacity at Ford Field and nearby is being doubled.

Sprint has also powered up its newer Evolution-Data Only (EV-DO) technology to the Super Bowl venue and the city for improved bandwidth. Sprint calls its EV-DO, or third-generation technology, Sprint Power Vision.

One big beneficiary of the added capacity will be the enormous number of news media outlets converging on Detroit.

Sprint has teams of engineers monitoring network activity to redirect communications in the event of an outage, aided by redundant network service and backup power supplies, Sprint said.

The company would not disclose the cost of the improvements.

This story, "Sprint bolstering network for Super Bowl" was originally published by Computerworld.

Copyright © 2006 IDG Communications, Inc.

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