The flaw in Obama's wireless plan

dkreichen1968

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Staff member
#2
My parents in rural Nebraska have had fiber to their home for several years now. Their area averages one person per square mile. It seems that their phone company, like that of Ten Sleep, saw the promise of added revenue worth the risk of expanding fiber even to a very rural population. Meanwhile in urban Qwest country we are lucky to have fiber to the node. Even if wireless was the answer for rural broadband there is plenty of available spectrum to bring it about now. Don't let anyone tell you they need additional spectrum to bring wireless broadband to rural areas. The wireless companies just need to build out what you already have. If your not using it yourself, lease it to someone who will use it.
 

dave73

DTVUSA Member
#3
My parents in rural Nebraska have had fiber to their home for several years now. Their area averages one person per square mile. It seems that their phone company, like that of Ten Sleep, saw the promise of added revenue worth the risk of expanding fiber even to a very rural population. Meanwhile in urban Qwest country we are lucky to have fiber to the node. Even if wireless was the answer for rural broadband there is plenty of available spectrum to bring it about now. Don't let anyone tell you they need additional spectrum to bring wireless broadband to rural areas. The wireless companies just need to build out what you already have. If your not using it yourself, lease it to someone who will use it.
They barely like to build out towers in rural america with lower frequencies. They're even less likely to build out with higher frequencies, which require more towers to cover the same area as a network using lower frequencies. That's why the wireless carriers are just sitting on their PCS licenses covering most of rural america. Any PCS networks built out in rural america are typically found along major highways & the main town area. Same thing with carriers who built out networks with AWS spectrum (I'm only aware of Cricket, MetroPCS, & T-Mobile having networks in AWS, with T-Mobile using theirs exclusively for 3G).

As for high speed broadband, I agree that the tecos & cable companies need to build out with fiber optic lines to get true speed. The few wireless broadband services outside of the wireless carriers have the problem of both cable & DSL: the more users online & the speeds drop (typical of cable), plus the service is also distance sensitive (typical of DSL). One company in my area that offers wireless internet is Airbaud, & they use licenses that are somewhere in the 2-3ghz bands. It requires a special modem (supplied by the internet carrier) & an antenna (also supplied by the internet carrier) aimed at the nearest tower, & the antenna must be outdoors to pickup the signal (No exceptions). Someone I know uses their service & is happy with them. I'm on DSL & like it, & really want to stay with DSL. Won't go with cable internet in my area as it goes out a lot (Comcast is my local cable carrier, but problems date back the inception of TCI in 1984).
 

n2rj

Moderator
Staff member
#4
Bringing fiber to rural areas can help wireless too, by providing much needed backhaul for remote wireless facilities. But the telcos must think we were born yesterday. All they seem to cry is "we want more spectrum, gimme gimme gimme" and figure that the public will just bend over and kiss their a**es.

From what I understand fiber will lower plant maintenance costs too since fiber doesn't corrode like metal wires will.
 

dkreichen1968

Moderator
Staff member
#5
As for high speed broadband, I agree that the tecos & cable companies need to build out with fiber optic lines to get true speed. The few wireless broadband services outside of the wireless carriers have the problem of both cable & DSL: the more users online & the speeds drop (typical of cable), plus the service is also distance sensitive (typical of DSL). One company in my area that offers wireless internet is Airbaud, & they use licenses that are somewhere in the 2-3ghz bands. It requires a special modem (supplied by the internet carrier) & an antenna (also supplied by the internet carrier) aimed at the nearest tower, & the antenna must be outdoors to pickup the signal (No exceptions). Someone I know uses their service & is happy with them.
Friends of mine had PCI Wireless Internet Access which operates using unlicensed spectrum in the 5.2-5.9 GHz range. It worked better for them than their current Qwest's 40 Mbps DSL. (They moved to an area where PCI wasn't available.) It has a stated range of 10 miles with the antenna with the dish reflector. It isn't mobile, but it is a wireless alternative to cable or DSL. I know that there is a similar system in Woodland Park also. The key though is having a fiber line to the tower.
 
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Trip

Moderator, , , Webmaster of: Rabbit Ears
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#6
Friends of mine had PCI Wireless Internet Access which operates using unlicensed spectrum in the 5.2-5.9 GHz range. It worked better for them than their current Qwest's 40 Mbps DSL. (They moved to an area where PCI wasn't available.) It has a stated range of 10 miles with the antenna with the dish reflector. It isn't mobile, but it is a wireless alternative to cable or DSL. I know that there is a similar system in Woodland Park also. The key though is having a fiber line to the tower.
At home, I have fixed wireless on the 900 MHz band, and while it's improved considerably over the years, it's only capable of 1.5 Mbps (we're uncapped because during peak hours the speed plummets to below 0.5 Mbps and my dad raised hell about it) and still has significant periods of downtime. The landline phone sticks around because the cell service is poor and nobody would trust VoIP on this connection. And there's no way to offer TV service over a connection that slow.

But fiber would fix all of those problems. Fiber to every home should be a goal like electrifying every home and providing landline phone service to every home was in the past.

- Trip
 

n2rj

Moderator
Staff member
#7
The problem is that people try to say that broadband is a "luxury." BUt they seem to forget that electricity or even mail delivery was a "luxury" too. Except that it isn't a luxury anymore.

Trip, is your area served by any cable company at all? Cable companies don't really need to run fiber to the home. They can use the existing hybrid fiber coax infrastructure with DOCSIS 3 to provide acceptable broadband speeds. Problem is that many cable companies don't want to deploy it unless there is competition from fiber to the home providers.
 

dkreichen1968

Moderator
Staff member
#8
I think that one of the reasons that my parents phone company invested in fiber was they were the only game in town for internet. There is no cable, and there is no wireless (the cell towers don't handle data), so if you want highspeed internet you have to pay Consolidated whatever price Consolidated wants for whatever speed of service Consolidated wants to deliver. I'm sure Verizon has the license on spectrum they could use to provide wireless broadband if they believed it was worth the effort or they were able to get a grant from the USF to do it. I'm sure if you sniffed for unused frequencies you'd find things were pretty much wide open, and it would be a great spot to use TV whitespace without any chance of interference. All the receivable stations are VHF and there are only a few UHF translators on the Platte Valley.
 

Trip

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#10
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dkreichen1968

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#12
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