Chamber member Crown Castle, the nation's largest provider of communications infrastructure--connecting people & businesses to essential data, technology & wireless service, took the time to answer a few questions about who they are and why they love Austin!
What makes your organization unique?
We live in a world where connectivity is no longer a luxury, it’s an absolute necessity. Smarter devices, faster data, and new technologies have led to a dramatic shift in the way people consume information and how businesses apply it, leading to a significant increase in data demand and usage. This connectivity, data access, and subsequent growth potential requires an intricately connected web of communications infrastructure. That’s where Crown Castle comes in. Crown Castle is the nation’s largest provider of shared communications infrastructure. The company owns, operates and leases more than 40,000 towers; more than 75,000 route miles of fiber; and approximately 70,000 small cell nodes on air or under contract in the top US markets. This nationwide portfolio of communications infrastructure connects cities and communities to essential data, technology, and wireless service – bringing information, ideas, and innovations to the people and businesses that need them.
Why did you join the Chamber? The tech community, including Crown Castle, has a large presence in Austin and has a tremendous responsibility to be involved in policy and work to find solutions to the problems that affect all Austinites. Crown Castle joined the Austin Chamber because it successfully brings together an engaged business community who share the same goal - to drive economic progress in Austin and be involved in productive conversations to advance the region. Working with Austinites and the city’s decision makers on the technologies of the future will be key in making sure the city has the necessary infrastructure and regulations in place to benefit from the coming innovations.
What do you love most about doing business in Austin?
Austin is a vibrant city that showcases its diversity and laid-back attitude through its food, culture, creativity, music, and more – not to mention, it was named the No. 1 Best Place to Live for the third year in a row by U.S. News and World Report. Austin is also an innovation hub, attracting major investments from companies like Google, Apple, Samsung, AT&T, Facebook, and HomeAway. We’re amongst great company in Austin as a member of the tech community.
What is the most exciting thing going on at your company right now?
The enhanced communications infrastructure we are deploying will enable 5G, which will usher in many promising new developments. Smart devices and wearables are changing our relationship with technology. Self-driving cars have the potential to make roads safer and cities less congested. And smart city technologies will bring new efficiencies and innovations to communities around the country. At this point, we’re only scratching the surface, but it will be exciting to see what innovators, developers, and technologists will come up with when they have the unlimited potential of 5G at their disposal. For our part, we’ve been installing thousands of small cells in cities and communities across the country, improving current wireless service and allowing people to stay connected. Small cells will play a crucial role in eventually delivering 5G technology to Austin—along with the economic activity that will follow. According to Accenture, that’s $500B in GDP nationwide. That’s why we’re continuing to work closely with municipalities, utilities, and communities to build the communications infrastructure that will bring 5G to your life.
What can customers expect when they use your service/product?
Communications infrastructure plays an important role in our lives. It not only connects us to loved ones, but also keeps us entertained, informed, and safe. As more devices, machines, and "things" come online, and new advancements like 5G are deployed, our towers, small cells, and fiber will work together to make these transformative technologies possible.
What do you want your impact in Austin to be?
Our communications infrastructure solutions create important connections that make communities around the country, including Austin, safer, better places to live. Here in Austin, Crown Castle has been working with the city to build the foundation for the fast-approaching 5G revolution, deploying miles of fiber, constructing 17 small cell nodes and investing millions in Downtown Austin with this work. Crown Castle has also partnered with the University of Texas for years and has built out a wireless network capable of supporting 5G throughout the campus, including in DKR Stadium.
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