Part of the growth in fixed wireless has to do with its lower costs versus fixed landline or cable. “(Fixed wireless technology is) more economical because you’re not digging up streets, you’re not burying cable or burying fiber,” Rise Broadband co-founder and Chief Development Officer Jeff Kohler said, noting, “The cost to outfit a tower to provide service to 50, 100, 200 households is not very expensive.”
Rise Broadband, the nation’s largest fixed wireless provider, uses a number of different proprietary technologies in its network, but is relying on LTE for most of its current and future deployments. “Rise prefers to use LTE in markets of higher population densities because of its ability to efficiently serve more customers from a single tower (providing greater capacity) while delivering speeds up to 100 Mbps,” said Jeff Kohler, Rise’s co-founder and chief development officer.
Wireless internet providers such as Rise have had considerable success from both a business and societal point of view. Using fixed wireless technology, broadband has been made available in rural areas lacking other broadband options. WISPs had been anticipating even better fixed wireless economics, potentially creating a business case for even more unserved areas, thanks to new spectrum the FCC had planned to make available. But those plans are in jeopardy now that large mobile carriers have asked the commission to change direction.
With roughly 200,000 customers, Rise Broadband is the nation’s largest provider of fixed wireless services. As such, the company highlights two critical trends in the telecommunications industry: the growing momentum behind fixed wireless technology, and the role that technology can play in crossing the digital divide.
As it works to build out fixed wireless services in rural areas, Rise Broadband is on the front lines of proving out the fixed wireless business model, and is a great example of how wireless technology can help connect more Americans to the internet.
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Rise Co-founder Jeff Kohler says areas with less density can best be served with fixed wireless networks that can be built for far less money and that the lawmakers who direct funding towards built-out projects are getting the message.
Telarus is celebrating partnerships with two telecommunications providers including Rise Broadband. Telarus agents can now sell Rise’s enterprise voice and data services throughout its coverage area
The advantage of fixed wireless is the cost of deployment particularly in serving rural parts of the country. Fixed wireless networks allow for higher capacity through shared spectrum.
A coalition of well-known communications organizations, including Rise, Google and others, asks the FCC to provide a quicker, more viable path to technology which will enable rural areas to receive expanded, faster broadband service.
Rise Broadband, Google and other members of the Broadband Access Coalition call on the FCC to authorize new, licensed, fixed wireless frequencies which can further close the digital divide as well as handle other applications.