By Kelly King, Chief Executive Officer, AT&T, Mexico

Since we arrived to México in 2015, we have worked to transform the telecommunications sector for the benefit of people and businesses.

With this vision in mind, we recently announced important steps in the journey to make Mexico City one of the great connected cities of the world by signing a collaboration agreement with Mexico City’s Ministry of Economic Development (SEDECO) to connect the Río Blanco Market.

This market is located in Gustavo A. Madero municipality, the 2nd most populated municipality in the city, and one of the most populated territories in the country.[1]

Mexican markets are a wonderful tradition. They bring together local suppliers of fresh vegetables, fruit, meat, and dairy products, to mention some. That includes some of the things I love the most: good food, good business, and now… good connectivity!

The merchants in Rio Blanco Market´s 450 stores will now be able to improve their business through more and faster transactions and a safer workplace, offering a better customer experience.

As the economic heart of the country, Mexico City employs millions of workers who live and transit through this dynamic city. It is also home of the largest and most important universities in the region.

That is why we also launched a project to connect the massive Mexico City Metro system, which has 5.5 million daily users. We finished the year announcing the first connected line in an event with Mexico City´s Mayor, Miguel Ángel Mancera, where our team tested the 4G LTE and free Wi-Fi service.

This is part of a 3-year project to connect the Metro system’s 195 stations and 12 lines. With 125 miles of tunnels, this Metro is considered the world’s 4th largest subway system and the largest in Latin America.

Line 7, the first connected line, has over 84 million riders per year. Now, they will all be able to stay connected to their jobs, schools, loved ones and their favorite content.

It is clear that Mexico City is on track to become a Smart City. Initiatives like these are a clear example of how, by working together, governments, companies and cities, can transform the places where people live, work and play.

With these projects, Mexico City joins a select group of Smart Cities that we are collaborating with, such as Dallas, Chicago and Atlanta.

This changes the way people communicate, giving them more access, more places to connect from and technology to transform and accelerate their businesses.

And this transformation is real. Today, 4G LTE is available over 76% of the time in Mexico. To put this in context, it is a larger percentage than in the United Kingdom or Germany. A huge leapfrog in just 3 years![2]

Back in 2015, our network barely had LTE coverage. Now, as you may know, our 4G LTE network covers more than 90 million people in Mexico. This network is part of the first and largest mobile service area in North America that reaches more than 400 million people and businesses. This is an unprecedented deployment of connectivity and technology.

Similarly, earlier this year we announced the deployment of a state of the art LTE-M network that will work across Mexico and the rest of North America to create a regional connectivity footprint.

This network will help deploy Internet of Things on a large scale and it is an important step as we help build a truly connected North America and a truly connected world.

Looking ahead, I am very excited about what technology has to offer for the city, the country and the world at large. Our vision is to connect people and businesses to the world.

It truly is time for something better!

[1] INEGI. National Municipal Information System

[2] OpenSignal Study October 2017: