Downtown Fresno image via wikipedia user JMora24
Written by David Castellon
The nation’s cellular providers are backing away from building massive cell towers and instead are opting to pepper communities with mini cell transmitters to boost local cell service.
The city of Fresno has about 35,000 sites where those transmitters can go, most of them atop light poles, utility towers and utility boxes, said Mark Standriff, a spokesman for the city.
“Carriers, connectivity and technology companies may reserve sites through an online portal,” states a press release from the city.
In May Fresno entered into an agreement with 5 Bars XG Communities, an Irvine-based wireless infrastructure company that serves as a go-between on behalf of municipalities and counties to broker deals with the nation’s four major wireless companies — Sprint, AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile — and other businesses when they want to construct or deploy upgraded infrastructure for wireless communication.
The contract also involves 5 Bars marketing the city as a place to receive this new technology to fill the gaps in its wireless coverage and boost local download speeds, leading to last week’s announcement on the availability of sites to install mini transmitters.
The mini transmitters also are expected to help the wireless industry speed up its service in the future by deploying 5G-speed Internet over the current 4G speed.
5 Bars is launching a proprietary site selection and reservation platform to enable the reservation of hundreds of these sites at one time.
“This effort puts the city of Fresno on the cutting edge with the first-ever deployment in California of a system that will help them prepare for 5G and emerging technologies, IoT [Internet of Things] and autonomous vehicles,” states a press release from the city.
“To meet this exponential demand, carriers, connectivity providers and technology companies will need to invest aggressively in small cells over the next couple of years,” it continues.
“The City of Fresno has already received significant interest from major carriers, including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint, as well as technology companies, such as Facebook and Google.”