AT&T working to fix service problems

Tessa Duvall

Some cell phone users are having problems with their wireless service on campus, a problem that began earlier this semester.

Edwin Craft, director of Communication Technologies, said although many wireless vendors have towers on or near campus, the issues are mainly with AT&T users.

When students returned to WKU this fall, a lot more of them had 3G phones, such as iPhones and BlackBerries, Craft said. Previously, more users used the Edge network, which uses a different connection than 3G.

But with the increase in 3G usage, the capacity of the towers is overloaded, he said.

Recent problems include difficulty sending and receiving text messages, delay in making calls or calls that won’t go through despite having signal, and calls that seem to go through but don’t ring on the other line, Craft said.

Craft said AT&T has been notified of the problem, and they’re currently working to improve it.

Cathy Lewandowski, AT&T Market Manager for Tennessee and Kentucky, said in an e-mail that wireless performance depends on a number of factors, including location, building density and overall traffic on the network at a given time.

From 2007 to 2009, mobile data traffic on AT&T’s wireless network jumped about 5,000 percent, she said.

“AT&T is continually enhancing our network throughout Bowling Green to improve our customers’ experience,” Lewandowski said.

Craft said he hopes to see the situation improve before the end of the month.

Bowling Green freshman Christina Casas said she has difficulty sending texts and making calls from her iPhone when she is in Mass Media and Technology Hall or near the bottom of the Hill.

When Casas attended the WKU-Indiana game Saturday afternoon, which had the second-highest home game attendance, she had similar difficulties with her phone.

She said it’s really frustrating because it makes it difficult to make plans to meet friends after class.

Casas said her Facebook application and other apps that use the Internet are slow.

Glasgow junior Adam Duvall said even though he uses Bluegrass Cellular, he still feels the side effects of AT&T’s problems.

When he calls friends who use AT&T, he notices that calls are frequently dropped, which is frustrating because he has to call back, Duvall said.

And Duvall’s friends with AT&T sometimes don’t receive text messages, which makes it difficult to make plans, he said.

Duvall thinks the problem is with AT&T because he has no difficulty calling or texting friends who are also Bluegrass Cellular users.