AT&T has announced a Remote Mobility Zone, a trio of portable cell towers that are being offered to business owners and government agencies to help during disasters and emergencies.
Remote Mobility Zone is small enough to fit inside of a suitcase and it can be deployed in under 30 minutes at which point it can provide both data and voice services even when wireless service in the area might be out.
AT&T is going to be offering 3 different versions of Remote Mobility Zone:
- Fixed site deployment establishes a mounted cell site for use as a backup communications system or as a primary network in zones without wireless network coverage. This can help enhance business continuity and disaster recovery capabilities by enabling sensitive operations to proceed even in loss-of-service situations.
- The “Fly-away” solution packs a small cell site into a suitcase, offering first responders an easy-to-use, transportable system that can bring voice and data coverage to an area where disaster has knocked out communication channels. These small cell sites can extend connectivity up to one half of a mile in any direction from the suitcase site. Created for use by police officers, firefighters and other emergency responders, the Fly-away AT&T Remote Mobility Zone option is currently available to government agencies and personnel.
- “Park and Use,” designed specifically for government use, integrates small cell sites into vehicles, allowing users to drive to locations without wireless coverage and activate service then and there. Roof-mounted satellite antennas further enhance communications on the move.
The devices will range in price from $15,000 to $45,000 and will also have some monthly fees attached to them as well.
Remote Mobility Zone devices can handle up to 14 calls at once and the coverage will extend to a ½ miles from where the unit is set up. Whether or not these will become available to consumers in the future is unknown. AT&T owners in San Francisco and other metropolitan areas have their fingers crossed.