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Tag Archive for: Broadband

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Advantages and Disadvantages of Broadband Technologies for Rural America – Infographic

Advantages and Disadvantages of Broadband Technologies for Rural America

Infographic by GeoLinks

 

BroadbandTechnologiesforRuralAmerica_GeoLinks

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Grow Food, Grow Jobs: How Broadband Can Boost Farming in California’s Central Valley

Grow Food, Grow Jobs: How Broadband Can Boost Farming in California’s Central Valley

The Central Valley of California is an enormous economic force, producing over one-third of the nation’s vegetables, two-thirds of its fruit and nuts, and contributing billions of dollars annually to the California economy. Unfortunately, many of California’s farming communities still lack reliable broadband Internet access. This lack prevents farmers from using cutting-edge technologies and real-time data inputs that would improve agricultural production, and severely hampers educational opportunities that support farming and growth. A particularly acute example of this is in the western Central Valley, where less than half of the population has access to broadband, the median income is $20,289, and agriculture is a leading economic driver. Government, education, and industry leaders in the area are working to provide communities with the resources they need to grow food as well as jobs.

Robert Tse, the California Rural Broadband Development Coordinator for the USDA and longtime organizer for California’s agricultural community, imagines what farmers can accomplish with greater connectivity. While working with technology developers and farmers, Robert has seen first-hand the benefits technology can bring. “When moisture sensors are deployed in fields,” Tse said, “agricultural economists have found that farmers can realize a 10 to 20% decrease in water use as well as a significant increase in field output.” In a state plagued by drought, using less water to grow more food is a major improvement. Benefits like these would have an immediate impact on farming communities and overall production. But, without broadband connectivity, such tools remain out of reach for many farmers.

Expanding connectivity also enables the dissemination of real-time information, like weather predictions and experimental approaches to crop management. One of the main missions of the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) is to provide farmers with up-to-date science and information. Gabe Youtsey, UC ANR’s chief innovation officer, emphasized how improved connectivity would further UC ANR’s mission: “To fulfill our education mission, research centers host local farmers at meetings and field days. With connectivity, those that live too far away to travel will be able to receive real-time video streams. Also, online learning can significantly expand the reach and impact of the 200 locally based cooperative extension advisors and specialists.” Several of UC ANR’s facilities now have broadband after being hooked up to the CalREN fiber backbone.

Vice Chancellor Linda Thomas of the West Hills Community College District is particularly in tune with the need for broadband access in conjunction with education. In her presentation at the 2018 CENIC annual conference, she cited the Brookings Institution’s summary of the impact poor connectivity has on education: “Rural communities are less likely to efficiently provide Internet access to students in public schools, as most rural schools lack access to high-speed fiber and pay more than twice as much for bandwidth. In a growing world of personalized online curricula, Internet-based research, and online testing, this severely restricts rural students from educational opportunities their urban counterparts may enjoy.” West Hills Community College offers academic degrees like agriculture science technology and irrigation engineering technology. These programs teach students to use cutting-edge farming technology and software, but operation of such tools requires fast, efficient broadband.

Yet extending access to these rural areas is often neglected, due to last-mile and middle-mile challenges. Laying fiber cable in the ground is not feasible in many places that remain disconnected. That’s where CEO Skyler Ditchfield and his company GeoLinks come in. GeoLinks is trailblazing the use of fixed wireless technologies to expand access with approaches that require less time and less infrastructure. “It can be difficult to meet the broadband needs of rural California with fiber connections alone,” said Ditchfield. “Fixed wireless broadband can meet the data needs, fiscal demands, and timeline to deploy these critical technologies across California.” GeoLinks uses solar and wind technologies to power carefully sited wireless towers that form a grid of connectivity across a community.

Now that wireless extension approaches have evolved enough to provide quality, reliable broadband to rural areas, the challenge is organizing community partners for widespread implementation. CENIC is partnering with organizations — as it has done with UC ANR, GeoLinks, and others — to develop plans for better connectivity, find funding to extend a wireless mesh into the unlinked reaches of the state, and ultimately help more farmers grow food and jobs. As Gabe Youtsey noted, “California communities must take control of their broadband future to ensure that everyone can participate in our digital economy by partnering to create new technologies and business models.”

Watch plenary panels and check out more content from the 2018 CENIC Annual Conference.

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Camarillo-based GeoLinks acquires broadband provider Vectus

Camarillo-based GeoLinks acquires broadband provider Vectus

Camarillo-based GeoLinks has acquired Southern California fixed wireless broadband provider Vectus.

The acquisition includes an outright procurement of the internet service provider’s fixed wireless network, key staff and existing customer base ultimately expanding GeoLinks’ existing ClearFiber™ network and coverage map.

The Vectus network offers dense coverage throughout Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino and Los Angeles counties.

“With founding roots in Southern California, GeoLinks has been familiar with Vectus’ robust wireless network for quite some time,” said GeoLinks CEO Skyler Ditchfield. “When the opportunity to officially acquire Vectus came to the table, all parties knew immediately that merging networks would be seamless from an operations standpoint, and prove immensely beneficial to existing and future clientele. With contracts finalized, company migration will commence immediately, enabling GeoLinks to further expand its coverage map while simultaneously increasing our overall network capacity, redundancy and ability to deliver higher bandwidth.”

David Saylor, president and chief technology officer of Vectus, said: “Post-acquisition, I have full confidence that all existing Vectus customers will continue to receive the same exceptional service they’ve become accustomed to. At our cores, GeoLinks and Vectus have synergistic beliefs — always put the customer first. By combining assets, all current and future customers will now have access to an even more resilient and redundant wireless network.”

The companies’ clients will encounter no disruptions of service during the network transition, GeoLinks said.

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GeoLinks Selects IgniteNet MetroLinq for Multi-gigabit Connectivity

GeoLinks Selects IgniteNet

GeoLinks, a leading telecommunications company ranked the no. 5 fastest growing telecom in America by Inc. 5000 in 2017, announced today that it has selected IgniteNet’s MetroLinq platform to power its award-winning ClearFiber™ network

GeoLinks’ ClearFiber™ network offers businesses unlimited bandwidth, real network redundancy, and guaranteed speeds reaching up to 10 Gbps. With the company’s recent network expansion, finding a reliable multi-gigabit wireless connectivity solution became increasingly critical to ensure quality of service. IgniteNet’s MetroLinq platform met this challenge and has been approved for deployment after a series of thorough benchmark tests in the field.

“We first learned about IgniteNet’s exciting product line a couple years ago,” said GeoLinks’ CEO Skyler Ditchfield. “We’ve been engaging with their technical and executive teams ever since. We officially began alpha testing with them well over a year ago and have seen great direction in their new product sets in the millimeter and microwave bands. We’re excited to continue working together on new products moving forward that will provide even greater range and bandwidth than the current offerings they have today.”

“We are really happy to be working with GeoLinks to power their highest-capacity ClearFiber™ network. MetroLinq products are a perfect solution for serving business customers not only because of high capacity, but also because it is license and noise free. In addition, the 60 GHz mmwave band is ideal for secure, low latency last mile dedicated access applications allowing service providers to offer fiber like connectivity at a much lower cost. The MetroLinq 10G Omnialso provide access on 3 different bands (60GHz, 5GHz, and 2.4GHz), enabling customers to build universal networks capable to of providing backhaul, last mile connectivity, and Wi-Fi access from the same, compact device, greatly simplifying the deployment saving space and cost.” – says Harold Bledsoe, President of IgniteNet.

About Geolinks

Headquartered in Southern California, GeoLinks is a leading telecommunications company and competitive local exchange carrier (CLEC) public utility, nationally recognized for its innovative Internet and Hosted Voice solutions. Ranked the No. 1 Fastest Growing WISP in America by Inc. Magazine, GeoLinks delivers Enterprise-Grade Internet, Layer 2 Transport, Hosted Voice, and both Public and Private Turnkey Network Construction expertly tailored for businesses and Anchor Institutions nationwide.

GeoLinks’ accelerated success is largely due to its flagship product, ClearFiber™, which offers dedicated business-class Internet with unlimited bandwidth, true network redundancy, and guaranteed speeds reaching up to 10 Gbps. Named “Most Disruptive Technology” in the 2018 Central Coast Innovation Awards, GeoLinks’ ClearFiber™ network is backed by a carrier-grade Service Level Agreement boasting 99.999% uptime and 24/7 in-house customer support. With an average installation period of 4 to 7 days, GeoLinks is proud to offer the most resilient and scalable fixed wireless network on the market.

About IgniteNet

Headquartered in Irvine, CA, IgniteNet is a wholly owned subsidiary of SMC Networks, Inc. IgniteNet has a proven track record of producing powerful, reliable, easy to deploy, and innovative cloud managed wireless solutions and the industry’s lowest cost 60 GHz wireless technology through channel partners worldwide, focusing on Enterprises and Service Providers. For more information, please visit http://www.ignitenet.com.

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What is Fixed Wireless Internet?

An introduction to Fixed Wireless Internet and the Fastest Growing WISP in America

 

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GeoLinks Announces Vectus Acquisition and ClearFiber™ Network Expansion

GeoLinks Announces Vectus Acquisition and ClearFiber™ Network Expansion

California’s fastest growing telecom, GeoLinks, announces acquisition of wireless Internet provider Vectus.

GeoLinks is thrilled to officially announce its acquisition of Southern California fixed wireless broadband provider, Vectus. The acquisition includes an outright procurement of the ISP’s robust fixed wireless network, key staff, and existing customer base ultimately expanding GeoLinks’ existing ClearFiber™ network and coverage map.

Founded by seasoned industry professionals in 2006, Vectus has become known as one of California’s leading providers of Ethernet over fixed wireless Internet services. Presently, the Vectus network offers dense coverage throughout Orange County, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles Counties.

“With founding roots in Southern California, GeoLinks has been familiar with Vectus’s robust wireless network for quite some time,” said GeoLinks CEO Skyler Ditchfield. “When the opportunity to officially acquire Vectus came to the table, all parties knew immediately that merging networks would be seamless from an operations standpoint, and prove immensely beneficial to existing and future clientele. With contracts finalized, company migration will commence immediately, enabling GeoLinks to further expand its coverage map while simultaneously increasing our overall network capacity, redundancy, and ability to deliver higher bandwidth.”

President and CTO of Vectus, David Saylor, agreed with Ditchfield that the acquisition was a natural and strategic fit for both entities. “Post-acquisition, I have full confidence that all existing Vectus customers will continue to receive the same exceptional service they’ve become accustomed to. At our cores, GeoLinks and Vectus have synergistic beliefs—always put the customer first. By combining assets, all current and future customers will now have access to an even more resilient and redundant wireless network. Skyler and GeoLinks are highly respected leaders and innovators in the world of telecom, and I speak on behalf of the entire Vectus team when I say that we’re extremely pleased to be combining forces and joining their efforts.”

Both Vectus and GeoLinks’ existing clients will encounter no disruptions of service during the network transition. GeoLinks looks forward to announcing further details on increased network offerings in the upcoming months.

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About GeoLinks

Headquartered in Southern California, GeoLinks is a leading telecommunications company and competitive local exchange carrier (CLEC) public utility, nationally recognized for its innovative Internet and Hosted Voice solutions. Named the Fastest Growing WISP in America, GeoLinks delivers Enterprise-Grade Internet, Layer 2 Transport, Hosted Voice, and both Public and Private Turnkey Network Construction expertly tailored for businesses and Anchor Institutions nationwide.

GeoLinks’ accelerated success is largely due to its flagship product, ClearFiber™, which offers dedicated business-class Internet with unlimited bandwidth, true network redundancy, and guaranteed speeds reaching up to 10 Gbps. Named “Most Disruptive Technology” in the 2018 Central Coast Innovation Awards, GeoLinks’ ClearFiber™ network is backed by a carrier-grade Service Level Agreement boasting 99.999% uptime and 24/7 in-house customer support. With an average installation period of 4 to 7 days, GeoLinks is proud to offer the most resilient and scalable fixed wireless network on the market.

Recognized as a thought-leader in closing the digital divide, GeoLinks proudly sits on an array of national boards, coalitions, and working groups including the Schools, Healthcare & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition, the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association (WISPA), the Broadband Consortium of the Pacific Coast (BCPC), and the FCC’s Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee’s (BDAC) Streamlining Federal Siting Working Group.In 2018 GeoLinks was awarded the Corporate Partnership Award by the Corporation For Education Network Initiatives In California (CENIC) for serving the research and education community in California.

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CENIC 2018 Internet for All in California — Featuring GeoLinks’ CEO Skyler Ditchfield

“Internet for All in California” session at CENIC‘s 2018 Annual Conference.

Featured Speakers:
Skyler Ditchfield, Rachelle Chong, Dane Jasper, Kim Lewis, Sunne Wright McPeak

Moderator:
Louis Fox

Session Description:

Advanced information, communication, computation and collaboration technologies, built upon broadband networks, have become essential elements for life in the 21st century. A major challenge confronting California today is how to ensure that all communities and Californians have access to broadband technologies, particularly those communities that have not traditionally benefited from leading-edge infrastructure. In a “big data” world, unprecedented volumes of data impact many facets of life from health care and public policy to national security, scientific discovery, education, and economic competitiveness. If California is to continue its leadership in these arenas, all Californians need access to these broadband technologies — in their homes, businesses, schools, libraries, hospitals and clinics, and government offices. Moreover, equity of access alone is not sufficient. Affordability is essential for many, as is the ability for some to adopt these technologies in meaningful ways. California is fortunate to have broad and effective partnerships among public, private, and governmental sectors working to address the digital divide, and the panelists will address how their organizations are involved, individually and collectively, to ensure that “Internet for All” is not just a vision but a reality in California.

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Broadband Technologies for Rural America

Broadband Technologies for Rural America

Presented by Skyler Ditchfield

 

Advantages and Disadvantages of Broadband Technologies for Rural America Presented by GeoLinks’ CEO, Skyler Ditchfield, at CENIC’s 2018 Annual Conference.

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CENIC Recognizes Corporate Partner GeoLinks for Serving the Research and Education Community in California

CENIC Recognizes Corporate Partner GeoLinks for Serving the Research and Education Community in California

LA MIRADA, Calif. & BERKELEY, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–CENIC is recognizing GeoLinks, headed by CEO Skyler Ditchfield, with the CENIC 2018 Innovations in Networking Award for Corporate Partnership.

Thanks to the commitment of Ditchfield’s team and their understanding of the importance of high-speed broadband for California research and education communities, and their strategy for reaching those with limited or no broadband access due to remote locations and challenging terrain, CENIC and GeoLinks have been able to move forward on numerous initiatives in support of these underserved communities.

Dozens of projects have been completed, are in progress, or are anticipated that will serve K-12 schools, the University of California’s Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) research sites, and public libraries throughout the state. Previously, a number of these sites were served at speeds of 1.5 Mbps or less. Most now have 50 to 100 times greater speeds as a result of these efforts.

CENIC President and CEO Louis Fox stated, “GeoLinks has become an important ally in our efforts to address broadband-access inequities in California. Together we are hard at work on public policy initiatives that, we hope, will bring more resources to California, and thereby bring the benefits of advanced networking to all Californians at their community anchor institutions – schools, libraries, health care, and research sites. CENIC looks forward to a long collaboration with Skyler and his team to ensure that California remains at the global forefront of innovation in research and education networking.”

Fox added, “As CENIC has historically focused on fiber-network deployments, I was skeptical at first about using fixed wireless, but GeoLinks has demonstrated that they can deliver gigabit speeds with symmetrical services to remote sites that have no access to fiber-optic networks. Even with the significant special construction necessary, they have delivered these services within 9 to 12 months, which is remarkable.”

GeoLinks’ fixed wireless network, ClearFiber™, uses carrier-grade equipment and provides telecom-grade broadband service with the same latency and jitter as fiber. GeoLinks is able to build solar- and wind-powered telecommunications facilities off the grid, resulting in rapid network deployment in a fraction of the time and for a fraction of the cost of fiber. ClearFiber uses FCC-licensed spectrum with redundancy at every level of hardware deployment.

“We analyze 50 years of regional weather patterns to determine the proper type of antenna, radio frequency output, and broadcast distance to ensure we receive 99.999% uptime on all of our links,” further explained GeoLinks CEO Skyler Ditchfield. “We also use this data to determine how much solar energy is needed for each individual site. As a standard, we engineer our sites to run for 25 days without sunlight to safeguard against extreme weather events. Furthermore, we also build in redundancy at every level, from our power equipment, to our routers, switches, and radios. We are also currently in the early stages of experimenting with wind energy. While solar power is typically low during storms, wind is high on mountain tops and can thus reduce the need for solar panel and battery load, ultimately reducing overall deployment costs.”

Recognized as thought-leaders in closing the digital divide, the GeoLinks leadership team proudly serves on an array of national boards, coalitions, and working groups including the Schools, Healthcare and Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition, the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association (WISPA), the Broadband Consortium of the Pacific Coast (BCPC), and the FCC’s Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee’s (BDAC) Streamlining Federal Siting Working Group.

The CENIC Innovations in Networking Awards are presented each year at CENIC’s annual conference to highlight exemplary innovations that leverage ultra-high bandwidth networking, particularly where those innovations have the potential to transform how education and research are conducted or where they further the deployment of broadband in underserved areas. The CENIC conference will be held March 5 – 7, 2018, in Monterey, California.

About CENIC • www.cenic.org

CENIC connects California to the world — advancing education and research statewide by providing the world-class network essential for innovation, collaboration, and economic growth. This nonprofit organization operates the California Research and Education Network (CalREN), a high-capacity network designed to meet the unique requirements of over 20 million users, including the vast majority of K-20 students together with educators, researchers, and individuals at other vital public-serving institutions. CENIC’s Charter Associates are part of the world’s largest education system; they include the California K-12 system, California Community Colleges, the California State University system, California’s public libraries, the University of California system, Stanford, Caltech, the Naval Postgraduate School, and USC. CENIC also provides connectivity to leading-edge institutions and industry research organizations around the world, serving the public as a catalyst for a vibrant California.

 

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SHLB to Release Cost Estimate and Broadband Strategy to Connect Rural America

SHLB Coalition to Release Cost Estimate and Broadband Strategy to Connect Rural America

CONTACT:
Amy Robinson, [email protected], (202) 261-6599

SHLB (SCHOOLS, HEALTH & LIBRARIES BROADBAND COALITION) PRESS CALL

REGISTER HERE

 

“Anchor institutions are key to solving the rural broadband gap.”

Washington, D.C. – (Monday, February 12th) – The SHLB Coalition (Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition) will release on Thursday a holistic broadband strategy to close the digital divide in rural markets. Particularly timely following the release of the Trump Administration’s infrastructure proposal earlier today, SHLB’s rural broadband strategy will focus on deploying high-capacity broadband “to and through anchors” to the surrounding community through wireless and wireline technologies, a strategy that could solve the digital divide for millions of rural Americans.

SHLB will hold a conference call with reporters THURSDAY, February 15th, at 11:00 am ET.

On the call, SHLB will release a new paper from CTC Technology & Energy that estimates the cost to connect all remaining anchors to fiber.  SHLB will also outline its strategy to connect rural America with a mix of fiber, fixed wireless, and TV WhiteSpace (TVWS), and present specific policy recommendations for the Trump Administration and Congress. The call will feature prominent voices representing anchor institutions as well as wireless advocates and commercial providers.

Speakers will include:

  • John Windhausen, Jr., Executive Director, SHLB Coalition
  • Joanne Hovis, President, and Andrew Afflerbach, CEO & Director of Engineering, CTC Technology
  • Jim Hermes, Associate Vice President, Government Relations, American Association of Community Colleges (AACC)
  • Melissa Slawson, General Counsel and Vice President of Government Affairs and Education, GeoLinks
  • Don Means, Executive Director, Gigabit Libraries Network (GLN)
  • Richard Cullen, Executive Director, Connect Americans Now

WHO: SHLB’s Broadband Industry Experts and Anchors

WHAT: Press Call to review New Cost Estimate and Rural Broadband Strategy

WHEN: Thursday, February 15, 2018, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm ET

WHERE: Phone Line Number: (202) 847-5889 (No PIN Required)

Register for the press call to receive an advance copy of the press release, cost estimate report, and rural broadband strategy.

 

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About SHLB:

The SHLB Coalition is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) advocacy organization that supports open, affordable, high-capacity broadband connections for anchor institutions and their surrounding communities. The SHLB Coalition is based in Washington, DC and has a diverse membership of commercial and non-commercial organizations that support our mission from across the United States.

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