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Time out ends for AT&T customers at OKC Thunder home games

AT&T has installed new equipment in Oklahoma City's Chesapeake Arena to improve AT&T service at Thunder games and other arena events.
by Adam Wilmoth Published: May 2, 2013

/articleid/3805382/1/pictures/2041701">Photo - A mobile AT&T cell tower sits in a parking lot on the southeast corner of 4th and Broadway before Game 5 in the first round of the NBA playoffs between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman
A mobile AT&T cell tower sits in a parking lot on the southeast corner of 4th and Broadway before Game 5 in the first round of the NBA playoffs between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, May 1, 2013. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman

Because the network is now tied to the building's antenna, it should work now at all home games, concerts and other events in the arena, AT&T said.

“These enhancement will allow basketball fans and others who attend events in Chesapeake Arena to share their experiences, inside and outside the arena, on their mobile devices,” said Bryan Gonterman, president of AT&T Oklahoma. “We want to enable the thousands of NBA fans and concertgoers to use their wireless devices to capture memories made and to share those memories on a global scale.”

What does it cost?

Wireless carriers pay about $24,000 annually to access the antenna, included in the $93.1 million in renovations at the city-owned arena completed last year. Carriers also pay a $6,000 startup fee.

AT&T began connecting some of its system to the antenna last year.

For the playoff games, AT&T also has increased its coverage outside the arena with the use of a Cell on Wheels, a mobile cellular tower parked a few blocks away.

by Adam Wilmoth
Energy Editor
Adam Wilmoth returned to The Oklahoman as energy editor in 2012 after working for four years in public relations. He previously spent seven years as a business reporter at The Oklahoman, including five years covering the state's energy sector....
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Our goal is to provide our customers with a best-in-class network experience, no matter where they are. With crowds topping 18,000 in the arena on game day, it was important for us to complete this upgrade, allowing our customers to truly live mobile.”

Steve Gray,
Vice president and general manager

for AT&T Oklahoma and Arkansas

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