Transit Wireless has started phase two of its NYC subway deployment, which will see cellular and WiFi connectivity brought to more stations in Manhattan and across Queens.
The company will be deploying distributed antenna systems (DAS) and WiFi in 11 stations in Manhattan first, including Grand Central Terminal, 34th St. Herald Square, and Bryant Park. Construction will start in Queens in March and is expected to be completed by June 2014. (See Transit Wireless: Unwiring the NYC Subway for more on how service underground is implemented.)
The work will include constructing a new basestation hotel in Queens to serve the network. All the big four carriers -- AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), Verizon Wireless , Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S), and T-Mobile US Inc. -- will get underground service with the phase two update. (See Verizon Onboard With NYC Subway Wireless and 4G LTE Grows (Above & Below).)
The company had said that the build-out would start in October and take six to eight months to complete. "Things are rolled out progressively," a spokeswoman for the company tells us. So the company has actually been working on phase two since the completion of the first phase of deployment but is announcing that construction is happening today.
The additional stations in Manhattan are being lit up this month and early next. The work will then move to Queens.
The service is currently available in 36 stations in Manhattan. Transit Wireless says that in 2013, the WiFi portion of the network handled about 2.6 million connections, processing more than 60 terabytes of data, with the average user spending nine minutes on the network.
Phase three of the network deployment will cover Brooklyn. Eventually the underground network will cover all 277 MTA subway stations and 20 million square feet of public space. Transit Wireless has estimated it will eventually deploy 7,000 multi-frequency distributed antennas and 5,000 access points connected to the outside world by 350 radio nodes and 125 miles of fiber optic cable.
— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading