Not to be technical but we are still a Wireless Internet Provider, as our largest segment of customers. We have struggled for a decade with dwindling available bandwidth. The FCC has sat on it’s hands while handing out massive frequencies to the cell phone companies. All that we have is the 2.4ghz spectrum which is not large enough to push any significant bandwidth through, and the 5ghz is saturated so the best we could give was about 25mbps.
The ruling today at the regular Federal Communication Commission (FCC) meeting in Washington D.C. finally and unanimously approved providing unlicensed spectrum of 1200mhz of the 6ghz spectrum for our use. Of that 850mhz is for outdoor Wireless use. This is such a huge win for our industry. It had gotten so bad that the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) deemed unlicensed service to be considered unserved, for the purposes of their Infrastructure bill.
What does this mean to our customers. Well, we stand at the ready with about $30,000 immediately available to start buying these high speed radios that will easily bump our speeds to 100mbps speeds, far above our 25mbps limit. The only problem, only two vendors currently make these radios. Our hopes is that our default company “Ubiquiti” will quickly release radios in this spectrum for us to use. High end plans will be the first to be converted to the new network that we will have to build. We stand ready to install this equipment as soon as it can arrive, and will start advocating to the government to start to take unlicensed seriously, as we all know the fiber, while cool to have, is far more than is needed. It will be much easier to get our customers moving faster sooner! Fiber is slow to build as we have only built 70 miles of fiber in the past 3 years, while we cover 250 sq miles of coverage area. This will keep us competitive for much longer.
We appreciate how you have stuck with Washington Broadband as we have grown with the demands for the Internet from dial-up to wireless, and now fiber. The local way is the best way, and we still have not taken one dime of government subsidies, like most others salivate for that corporate welfare we so disagree with.
Forbes Mercy, President – Washington Broadband, INC