September 28, 2015
By Scott Santi, Regional Vice President, Network
Last week massive crowds of enthusiastic, device-toting people from around the world flocked to Washington D.C., New York, and Philadelphia to see Pope Francis, and by all accounts it was truly a momentous occasion. We’re pleased to report that our wireless network performed like a champ, delivering a reliable experience to Sprint customers across the various Papal venues.
Throughout the events our team closely monitored performance and the investment we made to boost coverage and capacity in all three cities ahead of the Pope’s visit paid off. In DC and New York the network hummed along nicely, even when things heated up in Central Park as a cheering crowd of approximately 80,000 pressed in to see Pope Francis. In Philadelphia, when hundreds of thousands of people flocked into the streets to celebrate mass, our network continued to perform well.
City-By-City Network Usage
  • Washington DC Sept. 22-24: During the Pope’s visit our customers in Washington DC consumed  447.8 million megabytes of data, made 1.4 billion LTE connections, and placed 19.1 million voice calls. We saw network usage in DC peak between the Pope’s visits to Cathedral of St. Matthew and Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, and then again directly following the event at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. 
  • New York City Sept. 24-26: Our customers in NYC consumed 563.8 million megabytes of data, made 1.7 billion LTE connections, and placed 32.4 million voice calls. In New York the number of data sessions and voice calls on our network both increased more than 70% across the Papal venues. Network usage peaked in New York City just prior to the Pope’s arrival, and then again during the parade through Central Park.
  • Philadelphia Sept. 26-27: Customers in the City of Brotherly Love consumed 166.3 million megabytes of data, made 469.5 million LTE connections, and placed 5.1 million voice calls during the Pope’s visit. In Philly the number of data sessions across Papal venues increased by approximately 180% and voice calls by 167%. Network usage in Philadelphia peaked after the Pope’s visit to Independence Mall, and again after the final Mass on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

As the crowds recede and thousands of people head back to their homes, we consider it an honor to have played our part in helping customers capture and share this truly historic occasion.