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Network Vision/LTE - Shentel Market (Shenandoah Valley/Hagerstown/Harrisburg)


Boosted20V
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Robert, I've been following this board for a long time and live in an area serviced by Shentel. Before I realized the area I live in is serviced by them, I always wondered why I saw no updates on network.sprint.com around my location. Do you have any information about their progress thus far with NV or is the documentation you have strictly tied to the areas serviced by Sprint?

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Robert, I've been following this board for a long time and live in an area serviced by Shentel. Before I realized the area I live in is serviced by them, I always wondered why I saw no updates on network.sprint.com around my location. Do you have any information about their progress thus far with NV or is the documentation you have strictly tied to the areas serviced by Sprint?

 

I have no contacts at Shentel. All my info related to Shentel is public. Here is my last write up relating to Shentel Network Vision plans:

 

http://s4gru.com/index.php?/blog/1/entry-20-sprint-regional-affiliate-shentel-releases-some-more-network-vision-info-in-conference-call-with-investors/

 

Sorry I don't have more info. Would love to get a source from Shentel some day. All the NV data I have to date only focuses on corporate Sprint sites.

 

Robert

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Thanks, I had already listened to their Q4 Investor Q&A session. Glad they worked out rights to use 800mhz spectrum. From what they stated, it sounds like they're starting sites/backhaul in 2012 and finishing up in 2013. I've been watching to see when they release their Q1 results but haven't seen anything yet.

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Have you seen the presentation form the annual shareholders meeting?

 

"Plan to upgrade 274 cell sites in 2012 and the remaining 236 in 2013"

 

"Expect to launch LTE as early as Q3 2012"

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Have you seen the presentation form the annual shareholders meeting?

 

"Plan to upgrade 274 cell sites in 2012 and the remaining 236 in 2013"

 

"Expect to launch LTE as early as Q3 2012"

 

That's not materially different than what is in the S4GRU article posted above (back from February 7th).

 

Robert

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Have you seen the presentation form the annual shareholders meeting?

 

"Plan to upgrade 274 cell sites in 2012 and the remaining 236 in 2013"

 

"Expect to launch LTE as early as Q3 2012"

 

Shentel will present it quarterly financials on May 4. With a conference call scheduled for 2pm EDT. Hopefully they'll provide some more details then.

 

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/shenandoah-telecommunications-company-release-first-130000561.html

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  • 4 weeks later...

Got some good news from the local Sprint rep here in Central PA. This area is NOT considered a corporate market; all network/tower installs and maintenance are done by Shentel. As such, Harrisburg (for whatever reason) was a very early market for WiMax, as 4G was online as of the June 6, 2010 launch of the OG EVO.

 

As luck would have it, this market is also an early market for LTE, despite the corporate rollout dates that have leaked. The Sprint rep showed me maps of local LTE towers that are being tested and are online sporadically. In theory, those who already own Sprint LTE devices in the area may have picked up signal, although spotty, as they are still testing.

 

The Sprint rep confirmed to me today that Harrisburg (and York) will have LTE up and running by mid-June, with full deployment in July. Good news for those in the Capital Region of PA.

 

I take most of what I hear with a grain of salt, but I'm pretty confident this rep knew what he was talking about. Now I wish I had preordered!!!!!!

Edited by JayMunOne
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Thats pretty detailed for someone to be just BSing you. Unless (like some salesmen) hes good at stretching the truth. For your sake, I hope hes right!!!!

 

Sent from my Epic 4G (WiSuck) using Forum Runner

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I live in Harrisburg and was curious on the timing for Shentel. They've publicly stated that the marjority of their towers will be upgraded in 2012 with the remaining in 2013. Seeing as this is one of the more populous areas within their service region, I was hoping it would be early. I wasn't sure however, seeing as they are based out of VA, and thought maybe they would concentrate on that area first. I'll be getting an EVO LTE soon, so I'll keep an eye out.

Edited by Boosted20V
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It would be nice to get some bonafide details from Shentel's deployment. This is actually even the first rumors we have even heard.

 

I typically am extremely skeptical of info received from Sprint corporate store employees. However, Shentel store employees are likely to have more info given the much smaller nature of their company.

 

Robert via Kindle Fire using Forum Runner

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  • 2 weeks later...

Shentel is currently (as we speak) installing the Network Vision equipment on their towers in the Harrisburg PA area. This includes all the fun LTE stuff. Shentel is planning to turn on LTE in the next 2-3 weeks. With mid July being the worst case target date. They will not / cannot turn on their LTE network until sprint gives them the go ahead and they turn up their LTE network.

 

If you are in the Harrisburg area right now, you should noticed better 3G reception in most areas, but horrible (read: 5 - 50kbps) download speed. Because a lot of new equipment is being installed and some towers are down.

 

I do not work for shentel, but I know a few people. Please note that everything appears to be on schedule, but some delays might incur.

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I got an EVOLTE on Saturday, no LTE yet. However, I did notice NV towers throughout Camp Hill around the Carlisle Pike and EVDO DL's ~2.2mb/s.

 

are you seeing eHRPD?

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I don't believe you will see eHRPD till LTE is up?

 

There are lots of reports of eHRPD going live well in advance of LTE in many markets. eHRPD needs to be completely deployed on all the sites around a live LTE site for it to work correctly. So they are typically bringing up eHRPD over a whole market before even the first LTE sites start going live.

 

If Shentel is so close to going live with LTE around Harrisburg, their eHRPD either needs to be up now or very soon. It would also help serve as validation of the info.

 

Robert

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There are lots of reports of eHRPD going live well in advance of LTE in many markets. eHRPD needs to be completely deployed on all the sites around a live LTE site for it to work correctly. So they are typically bringing up eHRPD over a whole market before even the first LTE sites start going live.

 

If Shentel is so close to going live with LTE around Harrisburg, their eHRPD either needs to be up now or very soon. It would also help serve as validation of the info.

 

Robert

 

Good to know!

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I've attached images of the towers. I'm not sure which one and which pieces are sprint. I'm rather certain I was getting connection from them. In the same spot just yesterday I was getting between 3kbps ~ 45kbps down, 100kbps ~ 175kbps up and ~350ms ping. I've attached a screenshot of a speed test taken this evening. Sadly, it says EvdoA. I was in the Mechanicsburg / Camp Hill area. These towers are located directly behind this building:

https://maps.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&cid=7043713327827853757&q=Hampden+Fire+Station&iwloc=A&gl=US&hl=en

 

hnrGR.jpgzDW5g.jpglLimm.jpg

uczQS.png

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my best guess would be the one on the left (if it hasn't had Network vision) due to the smaller PCS antenna panels. Cellular and SMR are the larger panels which post-NV Sprint, AT&T, Verizon and other towers have.

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Those two tower configurations litter the area. This is the only spot that had them both side by side.

 

I've got a buddy who is into photography stuff. He's got some crazy zoom lenses. I going to try to get some better zoomed shots of these so we can get a better identification of them. Hopefully I can get it done this weekend...probably not, but I'd like to. I doubt I'll have the time.

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Shentel is currently (as we speak) installing the Network Vision equipment on their towers in the Harrisburg PA area. This includes all the fun LTE stuff. Shentel is planning to turn on LTE in the next 2-3 weeks. With mid July being the worst case target date. They will not / cannot turn on their LTE network until sprint gives them the go ahead and they turn up their LTE network.

 

If you are in the Harrisburg area right now, you should noticed better 3G reception in most areas, but horrible (read: 5 - 50kbps) download speed. Because a lot of new equipment is being installed and some towers are down.

 

I do not work for shentel, but I know a few people. Please note that everything appears to be on schedule, but some delays might incur.

 

Brother, I've been waiting for this news. I have a question related to the new NV equipment. I work downtown Harrisburg on Front Street and have TERRIBLE reception in the concrete building I work in. Had to use an app to force roam; but otherwise received superstrong WiMax signal with my OG EVO. I've gotten the EVO LTE and as recently as last Friday still have a terrible signal inside my office and had to root and use the RoamControl app again.

 

1. Will I see better reception penetration in my building once NV goes online? I haven't as of yet. Or may that not resolve until the iDen changeover?

 

2. Are LTE and CDMA independant of each other? For example, on my OG EVO, I had to roam at work on my CDMA radio but still got the powerful 4G WiMax signal in my office. Once LTE goes live here, can I still roam from work (if the signal does not get stronger with the NV rollout) for calls and texts while utilizing the LTE signal for data simultaneously?

Edited by JayMunOne
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If your building is reinforced concrete, chances are you may never have good cell reception. The steel bars in the reinforced concrete act like a Faraday cage. Once the 800MHz CDMA2000 1x Advanced goes live, that would probably be your best shot at good cell reception. The 1900MHz LTE isn't going to go through walls very well. The good news is that you *should* start seeing MUCH better 3G speeds in your area between now and then.

 

I was told that Shentel is focusing on towers that litter the I-81 corridor. I'm not sure from what "where" to "where" but the I-81 corridor in their coverage area.

 

You *should* start seeing better reception. I work in Mechanicsburg, in a big concrete building. I used to get 100 ~ 150kbps on 3G at my desk. I did a speed test earlier today and I got 593kbps down, 252kbps up.

Tower 310 04168, Evdo rev.A. -93 dBm

-93 dbm is a pretty bad connection IMO.

Netmonitor is a wonderful app!

 

I can get 2100kbps ~ 2600kbps down when I (believe) I'm connected to the tower I've posted pictures of above. I haven't had the time to verify and get better tower pics yet.

 

Yes, LTE and CDMA are independent of each other. They use different radios in your phone and on the tower. If you had powerful 4G WiMax signal in your office, you will probably have good sprint LTE service once it goes live. WiMax is a 2500MHz signal. WiMax has horrible penetration.

 

The smaller the frequency (the wave length), the longer the distance and the more stuff it can pass through (like 800Mhz). The higher the frequency, the shorter the distance and the less stuff it can pass through.

Higher frequencies have a higher theoretical bandwidth. Lower frequencies can over come this by having a wider band -- like have 804MHz to 824MHz is a larger band than 804MHz to 814MHz. The band is the number of frequencies (think radio station) that you are occupying to send and receive.

 

Verizion and AT&T's LTE operates in the 700MHz band. And Verizion has a much wider band to operate their LTE in than Sprint does. So theoretically, Verizon should *always* have a faster LTE speed with better penetration -- if the world lived in a clean, ideal world. The backbone connecting the towers the the internet is just as critical as the frequency and band. As well as the physical barriers the signal needs to pass through. Sprint moving the radios to the TOP of the tower *ideally* will over come the advantage of verizon operating in the 700MHz band. You get roughly a 31% signal loss from the antenna at the top of the tower to the radio at the bottom of the tower. You always had better reception from your old "roof mounted TV antenna" when you plugged a shorter coax cable into it and moved your TV as close to the antenna as possible. Signal degradation occurs because of the natural resistance in the coax line between radio and antenna. That's why a fibre cable backbone is ideal. No electrical resistance in light. You just have to make sure you focus the little blinkly lights correctly :-)

 

LTE can support simultaneous data / voice and text. LTE is basically an evolution of GSM technology. But yes, you will still be able to roam on 3G if your signal bites the big one once the NV upgrade is completed in your area. Given your good WiMax reception, you should get decent 3G / LTE signal in your office. Don't quote me on that later if you don't! It depends on what and how much is between you and the tower. Depending where you are at in harrisburg, your signal may have to go through MANY buildings to get to you.. It depends where the tower is located at.

 

 

In other news..

 

I talked to someone who works for Sprint over the weekend. I reiterated my information to them about shentel. He said it was an optimistic time line :-( But he confirmed the upgrade IS under way, and a few towers around Harrisburg will start to see LTE sooner rather than later. But he wouldn't commit to any dates. But the towers will go NV live sporadically and we can expect many pockets in LTE coverage until they are completely done. When asked when a total harrisburg area (east and west shore) deployment may be completed, I was told by end of the year.

 

I was able to map out the towers around the Harrisburg beltway -- highways 81 / 581 / 83. I'll try to post that and sites that I've been able to get the best 3G speeds on, which should point to the earliest NV upgrades. I have not mapped any towers in down town harrisburg yet.

 

So far, to me at least, it seems that the best speeds / connections have been along 581 from Mechanicsburg to the 83 Split, across the bridge, and to 322.

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If your building is reinforced concrete, chances are you may never have good cell reception. The steel bars in the reinforced concrete act like a Faraday cage. Once the 800MHz CDMA2000 1x Advanced goes live, that would probably be your best shot at good cell reception. The 1900MHz LTE isn't going to go through walls very well. The good news is that you *should* start seeing MUCH better 3G speeds in your area between now and then.

 

I was told that Shentel is focusing on towers that litter the I-81 corridor. I'm not sure from what "where" to "where" but the I-81 corridor in their coverage area.

 

You *should* start seeing better reception. I work in Mechanicsburg, in a big concrete building. I used to get 100 ~ 150kbps on 3G at my desk. I did a speed test earlier today and I got 593kbps down, 252kbps up.

Tower 310 04168, Evdo rev.A. -93 dBm

-93 dbm is a pretty bad connection IMO.

Netmonitor is a wonderful app!

 

I can get 2100kbps ~ 2600kbps down when I (believe) I'm connected to the tower I've posted pictures of above. I haven't had the time to verify and get better tower pics yet.

 

Yes, LTE and CDMA are independent of each other. They use different radios in your phone and on the tower. If you had powerful 4G WiMax signal in your office, you will probably have good sprint LTE service once it goes live. WiMax is a 2500MHz signal. WiMax has horrible penetration.

 

The smaller the frequency (the wave length), the longer the distance and the more stuff it can pass through (like 800Mhz). The higher the frequency, the shorter the distance and the less stuff it can pass through.

Higher frequencies have a higher theoretical bandwidth. Lower frequencies can over come this by having a wider band -- like have 804MHz to 824MHz is a larger band than 804MHz to 814MHz. The band is the number of frequencies (think radio station) that you are occupying to send and receive.

 

Verizion and AT&T's LTE operates in the 700MHz band. And Verizion has a much wider band to operate their LTE in than Sprint does. So theoretically, Verizon should *always* have a faster LTE speed with better penetration -- if the world lived in a clean, ideal world. The backbone connecting the towers the the internet is just as critical as the frequency and band. As well as the physical barriers the signal needs to pass through. Sprint moving the radios to the TOP of the tower *ideally* will over come the advantage of verizon operating in the 700MHz band. You get roughly a 31% signal loss from the antenna at the top of the tower to the radio at the bottom of the tower. You always had better reception from your old "roof mounted TV antenna" when you plugged a shorter coax cable into it and moved your TV as close to the antenna as possible. Signal degradation occurs because of the natural resistance in the coax line between radio and antenna. That's why a fibre cable backbone is ideal. No electrical resistance in light. You just have to make sure you focus the little blinkly lights correctly :-)

 

LTE can support simultaneous data / voice and text. LTE is basically an evolution of GSM technology. But yes, you will still be able to roam on 3G if your signal bites the big one once the NV upgrade is completed in your area. Given your good WiMax reception, you should get decent 3G / LTE signal in your office. Don't quote me on that later if you don't! It depends on what and how much is between you and the tower. Depending where you are at in harrisburg, your signal may have to go through MANY buildings to get to you.. It depends where the tower is located at.

 

 

In other news..

 

I talked to someone who works for Sprint over the weekend. I reiterated my information to them about shentel. He said it was an optimistic time line :-( But he confirmed the upgrade IS under way, and a few towers around Harrisburg will start to see LTE sooner rather than later. But he wouldn't commit to any dates. But the towers will go NV live sporadically and we can expect many pockets in LTE coverage until they are completely done. When asked when a total harrisburg area (east and west shore) deployment may be completed, I was told by end of the year.

 

I was able to map out the towers around the Harrisburg beltway -- highways 81 / 581 / 83. I'll try to post that and sites that I've been able to get the best 3G speeds on, which should point to the earliest NV upgrades. I have not mapped any towers in down town harrisburg yet.

 

So far, to me at least, it seems that the best speeds / connections have been along 581 from Mechanicsburg to the 83 Split, across the bridge, and to 322.

 

Thank you so much for the information. I did find it strange that my signal for calls/texts is downright TERRIBLE in my building (I work at the courthouse), but the 4G WiMax was superstrong. Knowing what I know from your very informative post, it seems like the 2500 MHz signal would be even worse than the CDMA signal, but it was the opposite. Always had full strength, always had superfast data. But I would struggle to receive calls/texts and my battery would die in 2 hours if I did not force roam for calls/texts. It's pretty obvious I don't know the technology, so I apologize for not understanding the semantics of how that worked.

 

I live in Linglestown and had spotty 4G. We'll see once the towers switch over. And I would love to see that map! I've noticed the same 3G speeds, except for within a mile of the tower just north of 22 (by the Sprint store). I got speeds last week around 2100 kbps down/700 Kbps up when I was close to the tower; after a mile east (closer to the Best Buy on Jonestown Road), it hovered around 500Kbps Down/200 Kbps up. I've been fine with that on my OG EVO because of the WiMax. I'll admit it's been getting frustrating without the higher speeds.

 

Thank you AGAIN for all your help. I'm just still perplexed why I would get a terrible CDMA signal and a phenomenal WiMax signal in the reinforced concrete courthouse? Maybe its because they removed all the asbestos 2 years ago. LOL

Edited by JayMunOne
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Thank you so much for the information. I did find it strange that my signal for calls/texts is downright TERRIBLE in my building (I work at the courthouse), but the 4G WiMax was superstrong. Knowing what I know from your very informative post, it seems like the 2500 MHz signal would be even worse than the CDMA signal, but it was the opposite. Always had full strength, always had superfast data. But I would struggle to receive calls/texts and my battery would die in 2 hours if I did not force roam for calls/texts. It's pretty obvious I don't know the technology, so I apologize for not understanding the semantics of how that worked.

 

I live in Linglestown and had spotty 4G. We'll see once the towers switch over. And I would love to see that map! I've noticed the same 3G speeds, except for within a mile of the tower just north of 22 (by the Sprint store). I got speeds last week around 2100 kbps down/700 Kbps up when I was close to the tower; after a mile east (closer to the Best Buy on Jonestown Road), it hovered around 500Kbps Down/200 Kbps up. I've been fine with that on my OG EVO because of the WiMax. I'll admit it's been getting frustrating without the higher speeds.

 

Thank you AGAIN for all your help. I'm just still perplexed why I would get a terrible CDMA signal and a phenomenal WiMax signal in the reinforced concrete courthouse? Maybe its because they removed all the asbestos 2 years ago. LOL

 

I'd say there's a Clearwire location much closer to your location at work than a Sprint site. Not all Clearwire sites are colocated with Sprint sites.

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