New technology could help boost cell phone service in Wichita

WICHITA, Kansas – Dead spots for cell phone service across Wichita continue to be a nuisance for many residents.

One Kansas based communications company is looking to enter into an agreement with the city of Wichita, in hopes of changing that.

Ideatek Communications, based out of Buhler is looking to install 60 miles of fiber optic network in Wichita.

Currently, Wichita is using macro cell technology, which involves getting cell phone service from a cell phone tower that is anywhere 150 to 400 feet tall.

Ideatek is hoping to switch to micro cell technology, with smaller, 35 foot towers.

Ivan Kuhn, the VP of Sales and Marketing with Ideatek says this could be the solution to the outdated technology.

“Basically these antennas are filling in the gaps and weak spots by the existing large towers,” said Kuhn.

Kuhn says Ideatek would look to put the antennas on existing light poles or install upwards of 120 poles in non-intrusive areas.

“The plan is to put in poles, these would go in the public right of way, the utility right of way,” said Kuhn.

It’s estimated the project with cost more than $10 million to implement.

Wichita City Councilman James Clendenin says the city will also receive some compensation from the project.

“There is a price per pole that they are going to pay, so the city of Wichita will get 5-percent of the revenue that Idea-tek brings in,” said Clendenin.

The city would also receive a one time fee of $1,000 per pole, based on a calculation of $100 a pole for 10 years.

Clendenin adds that the project is a win-win for all parties involved.

“There are dead spots all over the city, the great part about this technology is that it’s going to set Wichita apart from bigger communities,”: said Clendenin.

The Wichita City Council will vote on the agreement at the next council meeting on Tuesday.

Clendenin says if the city chooses to implement the technology, that it could take one to two years before residents would start seeing the benefits of the upgrade.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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