EE adds more spectrum and masts to cope with anticipated 15TB of traffic at Glastonbury – more than Bristol that weekend
The 2016 Glastonbury Festival will be covered by the biggest and most powerful temporary 4G network ever built in the UK, according to EE, which is adding new masts and more spectrum at Worthy Fam for this year’s event.
EE (and before that Orange) has been an official partner of the festival for the past few years, building networks that can cope with the additional 135,000 people that descend upon rural Somerset each year Glastonbury is held.
It is expected that 15TB of data will be consumed at the festival on EE’s infrastructure– 20 times as much as in 2011, before the arrival of 4G. Planning for the network started nine months ago and mast construction starts four weeks before the bands start playing.
EE Glastonbury 4G
Previous temporary networks have used 20MHz of 1800MHz spectrum, but this year, an additional 35MHz of high capacity 2.6GHz airwaves will also be deployed. EE says it has reviewed congestion graphs from last year and is optimising the location of each base station, and will also build a sixth, additional mast to boost coverage across the site.
“2016 has already seen 4G data usage increase by at least 40 percent at other major events year on year and this trend shows no sign of slowing down,” said EE’s Spencer McHugh.
“Each year social media feeds all over the world are flooded with images and videos of Glastonbury Festival so, in anticipation of the huge demand we expect to see at Worthy Farm this June, we’ve tripled our 4G capacity thanks to a number of new innovative network technologies.”
EE has also co-developed the official Glastonbury application, will offer a phone charging service, and provide 4G-powered Wi-Fi. However, unlike previous years, hotspots will not be built into fibreglass cows.
Temporary networks are essential for major events that result in strain on local networks, meaning that visitors and residents of the area suffer a noticeable decrease in service quality.