A family business that is constantly on the move, Grammy Award-winning rockers Los Lonely Boys rely on CDMA mobile broadband to keep their tours running smoothly and to stay connected with management, vendors, fans and family.
Its 9:43pm at the Wheeler Opera House in Aspen, Colorado, and Los Lonely Boys – brothers Henry, Ringo and Jojo Garza – are opening the show with a blistering rendition of their song, "Senorita."
There may be only three musicians on stage, but behind the scenes a crew of five spend nine hours each day, 200 days a year, executing logistical and production details orchestrated by tour manager, Glenn Felton. A 20-year veteran of the concert tour production business, Glenn pulls it all together with his mobile phone, a laptop and a mobile broadband connection from Verizon Wireless.
In a line of work where fixed broadband connections are either scarce or expensive to rent, mobile broadband enables Glenn to work not only on the bus but at each tour venue. A typical afternoon involves planning upcoming shows, dealing with promoters and conveying updates on stage requirements and catering – all while attending to dozens of issues like stage wardrobe needs, band and crew laundry, ordering meals and procuring gear.
Glenn snaps a photo from the side of the stage and uploads it to the group's Facebook page, then retreats to a corner where he has set up operations. He checks e-mail whenever he can, and no detail is too trivial for his immediate attention.
"I'm taking care of finances, I'm budgeting, I'm watching payroll and making sure we're getting paid, making sure my crew is happy and the band is happy," he says.
Stanley Zadrozny, executive director for network technology development at Verizon Wireless, says that such demanding use is possible because the company has "a proud history of providing the best 3G wireless network in the US and continues to update, upgrade, expand and improve it."
"Verizon's development of 4G LTE in 25 to 30 US metropolitan areas by the end of 2010 lays the groundwork for the next giant leap in user experience," Zadrozny says.
After the show, settling into a leather booth in the bus' forward lounge area, Glenn begins checking e-mail and the latest weather forecasts. "Out here on the road we get great connectivity," he says. "This is where my day starts and ends. Often I'll leave some work for the bus, and while we're moving I’ll catch up on e-mails to friends and family."
Mobile broadband enables Glenn to conduct the band's business round-the-clock, whether on a mountain pass or in a congested city. "There’s nothing I've run into that I can’t send over the mobile network," Felton says. "It saves us money, time and paper, and we keep everyone happy and productive."
Los Lonely Boys official home page
Thinking Ahead: North America – living the next communications era – join the discussion
Ericsson CDMA Voice Core
Buses in Brazil connected to mobile broadband
Asia-Pacific key to 50 billion connected devices
Mobile internet is future in China – part one
Mobile internet is future in China – part two