Liberty Mobile USVI gave an update April 12 on the ongoing enhancements and expansion of its mobile network and infrastructure in the United States Virgin Islands. Up to now, the company, formerly known as AT&T USVI, has deployed 5G mobile speeds throughout more than half of the territory. Once finished, the upgrades will provide resilience and redundancy against natural disasters and improved network performance in the U.S. Virgin Islands.
According to Naji Khoury, president and CEO of Liberty Mobile USVI, the company has already deployed 5G speeds in over 54 percent of the sites throughout St. John, St. Croix and St. Thomas, and it is currently focused on completing work on 70 percent of the sites by the end of the year. The executive added that Liberty currently has 49 upgrade and expansion projects on schedule in addition to the 43 that the company completed last year. Liberty also upgraded 19 cell sites with either underground fiber or microwave deployment.
“All of the work that we are currently doing is starting to produce results. We see it in our USVI cell sites, which improved their available capacity by 78 percent. Mean download speeds also improved 20 percent from Q3 2020 to Q1 2021, according to the information we received from Ookla Speedtest©,” Khoury said. “The end result will be a faster, more resilient mobile network that will give customers a better signal, fewer dropped calls and a faster mobile internet.”
Regarding Liberty’s fiber deployment project, Khoury stated that the company has completed 95 percent of the trenching work, pulled 88 percent of the fiber and finished 100 percent of a small temporary portion of aerial installation due to terrain requirements. That represents 88 percent of the total cable distance throughout the entire territory. On St. Thomas, Liberty completed 90 percent of its trenching efforts and pulled 77 percent of the fiber installation for a total of 78 percent of completed cable distance.
As for the underground construction progress on St. Thomas, the executive said that construction at the Estate Ross route and aerial construction at the Crown Mountain to Nana Hill segment were already completed. He said that splicing on both the Estate Ross and Nana Hill routes will take place early this month to migrate the antennas as soon as possible, while construction and fiber installation of the Nana Hill to Charlotte Amalie segment has already been completed.
Last-mile construction on Flag Hill is pending authorization from the landlord, but construction to Flag Hill from the east has continued. Crews have also begun construction on the Raphune Hill area, one of the last remaining sections needed to complete the ring’s construction.
Regarding mobile offers, the company recently began offering its new Unlimited 50+ mobile rate plan for residents of Puerto Rico and the USVI who are ages 50 and older. Unlimited 50+ includes unlimited voice, text messages and data in Puerto Rico, USVI, United States, Mexico and Canada for $60 per month for one line or $40 per month per line for two lines for subscribers who enroll in the autopay and electronic bill options.
The Unlimited 50+ plan also offers free text messages to over 120 countries and access to AT&T’s 5G network in Puerto Rico, USVI and the US at no additional cost. The plan offers discounts and mobile fraud security features to new and existing customers. It is also the first exclusive mobile service rate that the company launches since its acquisition of AT&T operations in Puerto Rico and the USVI. Liberty will continue to use the AT&T brand for several months until it phases into the Liberty brand.
Liberty Mobile USVI is a sister company of Liberty Communications of Puerto Rico and a subsidiary of Liberty Latin America with headquarters in Denver, Col., and is a leading communications company operating in over 20 countries across Latin America and the Caribbean with renowned brands such as Cable &Wireless, Flow and BTC, among others.