Update on subway cell service work

Some equipment to bring a cell phone signal to the subway has been installed in downtown Los Angeles. Photo: Metro.

Some equipment to bring a cell phone signal to the subway has been installed in downtown Los Angeles. Photo: Metro.

The good news is that technical work continues on installing equipment necessary to provide cell service throughout Metro’s subway tunnels.

The not-as-good news: the schedule has slipped due to ongoing negotiations between Metro’s contractor, InSite Wireless, and wireless carriers. InSite Wireless still must also sign a deal with a firm to supply WiFi in underground stations.

Separately, Metro is also working on a deal that in the near future could supply limited free WiFi and paid WiFi throughout much of Union Station. Stay tuned — more info on that effort hopefully soon.

15 replies

  1. No rush. Or underground is fine without chatty alienating private conversations. Or system does not carry many Drs and Lawyers, no I do not see the civic necessity. Maybe Wifi/cell service at stations only, this way youll at least get a text or voicemail while in transit.

    • It would be pointless to have cell service only at stations…*talks for 3 seconds on phone* “Ohh train is here sorry. Gtg.” And wifi? I think we can live without wifi for a few minutes…So I think we should either have wifi and cell on the entire line or none at all.

  2. I thought was only for the stations. In any case, please hurry with getting the entire system up with wifi. Gee it is 2015 already. So behind the times Metro is.

    • Yes, you can get WiFi in some parts of Union Station. Still not an official thing yet. Not just your imagination!

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

  3. We don’t have a citizenry that is well-mannered like in Asia, where people text on the subway or watch videos with earbuds. You know it’s just going to turn into a bunch of screamers on speakerphone and blaring music videos from Youtube. Hope I’m wrong.

    • You can’t be serious that Americans are uncivilized compared to Asians. I use an headphone and respect the privacy of others by not talking on my cell phone all the time while riding transit.

      • You are both right and wrong. Yes, I myself use Noise cancellation headphones and respect the privacy of others. However, Americans in transit are uncivilized. If I had a dollar for every time someone starting “bumping” their awful youtube quality music on the bus and train, I wouldn’t even have a need to use transit period.

  4. The potential benefit for having WiFi and cell service in subway stations is the possibility of adding retailers and vendors to stations who then can utilize the connections to conduct business transactions.

    • Not that voice calls can’t be done over WiFi through WiFi calling, Skype, LINE, etc. etc….

  5. Cell service and data coverage in the underground is a great idea—a big win for added security and the ability to call for help or inform your boss you will be late. It would have been handy for me today as my Purple Line train stopped at about 8:30am because there was a person on the tracks. I sincerely hope this is extended to all underground stations on all lines.