SHLB – Want to stay up-to-date on all of GeoLinks’ latest news and the world of telecom? Check out GeoLinks’ blog by visiting Geolinks.com/NEWS

Posts

GeoLinks Makes Mogul’s Top 100 Innovators in Diversity & Inclusion in 2017

GeoLinks, Skyler Ditchfield

GeoLinks is a member of the SHLB Coalition, a non-profit, 501(c)(3) advocacy organization that supports open, affordable, high-capacity broadband connections for anchor institutions and their surrounding communities. Additionally, GeoLinks works with the Microsoft Whitespace Projects, pushing for more rural and urban wireless spectrum to ultimately drive up competition and lower industry costs which aligns with GeoLinks’ focuses to have a positive impact on the local economy.

Too see the full list visit: https://onmogul.com/stories/top-100-innovators-in-diversity-inclusion

Can Fixed Wireless Fix Rural Broadband?

Original Article

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a telco, a cable company or a software giant with designs on the ISP market, everyone is hoping that new wireless solutions will cut the cost of providing broadband to large sections of the country. The big question is: How much juice does new wireless tech actually have? And is it enough to make rural broadband deployments cost effective?

Service provider GeoLinks and technology vendor Mimosa Networks Inc. , two partners on the fixed wireless frontier, are very bullish on the technology’s promise. How bullish? In working with the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband Coalition (SHLB), GeoLinks CEO Skyler Ditchfield says he believes fixed wireless technology can be used to reduce the amount of money needed to connect underserved anchor institutions across the US by up to 70%. That could go a long way to helping close the digital divide, and it could even kick off new competition in some markets where service providers traditionally haven’t cared to venture.

“[We’re] working on doing the cost analysis on doing fixed wireless instead of fiber,” says Ditchfield, referring to a program SHLB is working on to get federal funds for rural broadband deployments. “We think we can probably reduce the total cost in the build ask by about 65% to 70%.”

As partners, GeoLinks and Mimosa have experience in delivering broadband to far-flung places. For example, Ditchfield notes that GeoLinks has built out service to a couple of dozen rural schools in the last 18 months, and that many of these deployments rely on solar- and wind-powered telecom relay stations with wireless links that range from 25 to 58 miles.

“These were schools that weren’t able to complete state testing. The students were being bussed out because they had to go do the state testing at another facility and that’s obviously very costly and time consuming,” says Ditchfield. “So we were able to come in and solve that geographical issue with fixed wireless.”

Ditchfield also recalls a recent deployment where an island off the coast of California needed help to improve the reliability of local Internet. In that case, the issue wasn’t so much the distance the wireless signal had to travel, but the fact that, in order to provide backhaul capacity for the island’s Internet service, the signal had to reach across water from the mainland. Unfortunately, the effects of temperature and air pressure caused the signal to bounce and bend off the water in unexpected ways, disrupting connectivity on a daily basis.

“If you’re looking on a hot day down the road and you’re looking at a distance and you see those heat waves where the light starts to bend a little bit, that mirage effect, that’s basically what’s happening with the radio frequency signals as well,” explains Ditchfield.

GeoLinks and Mimosa solved the issue by dropping wireless equipment to two separate locations on the island, with a fiber run in between, and creating redundancy to counter the interference. Now when one link goes down, the local ISP fails over to the second link.

For future fixed wireless broadband expansion, there is still the issue of finding enough available spectrum to meet bandwidth demand. However, the good news is that companies that are providing fixed wireless services don’t necessarily need to compete with mobile providers for some of the most coveted spectrum real estate. Mimosa Chief Product Officer Jaime Fink and others are lobbying the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to open up more mid-band spectrum, and Fink says that while frequencies in the 3.7GHz band aren’t ideal for mobile services, they are a viable option for fixed wireless connections.

The FCC issued a Notice of Inquiry to study opportunities for mid-band spectrum in July.

“Mimosa has been extremely aggressive with the FCC,” says Fink, noting that the company has put together a Broadband Access Coalition that includes members such as GeoLinks, Cincinnati Bell Inc. (NYSE: CBB) and others. The coalition, as he explains it, is “really pushing the envelope of how fast can we share the 3.7GHz spectrum. It’s really perfect for fixed wireless applications. It’s not something that would be typically used by mobile guys out in rural areas especially so we’re trying to really advance access to that band for multipoint as soon as possible.”

TV white spaces, the spectrum encompassed by the guard bands around older analog television stations, offer another possible alternative. Microsoft Corp.(Nasdaq: MSFT) is pushing heavily for white spaces development as part of a $10 billion rural broadband project and Ditchfield sees the company as a potential partner for GeoLinks down the road. (See Microsoft Pushes White Spaces for Rural Broadband .)

There’s long been a question of whether fixed wireless service will eventually be a cable killer, ending cable’s long dominance of the home broadband sector. Even beyond rural markets, if fixed wireless technology can cut the cost of deployments and still deliver high-speed Internet, it has the potential to radically shift market dynamics.

However, even if wireless technology becomes the preferred solution for last-mile broadband delivery in the future, it won’t negate the need for wired backhaul. Fink points out that even though wireless links can span 50 miles and beyond, the more common scenario is to have a fiber connection within five miles or so of end users in order to support fixed wireless service.

The logical conclusion is that broadband going forward will be a mix of wired and wireless technologies. That’s why cable ISP Charter Communications Inc. is running 5G fixed wireless trials, and why Google Fiber Inc. is considering fixed wireless solutions in conjunction with existing fiber-to-the-home deployments. (See Charter Reveals New Details on 4G/5G Trials and Google Fiber Now a Wireless ISP!.)

Fixed wireless isn’t likely to kill cable, nor to let telcos off the hook for fiber. But it could still open up a lot more opportunity for broadband expansion and specifically for reaching unserved and underserved rural communities across the country.

— Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, Light Reading

SHLB Coalition Welcomes GeoLinks as Newest Member

Original Release

GeoLinks provides direct layer 2 transport connectivity and voice services to anchor institutions throughout the state of California and beyond.

GeoLinks became the newest member of the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition, a diverse partnership of 98 anchor institutions, commercial companies, non­-profit broadband providers, foundations, public interest groups, and others. Together, these organizations promote open, affordable, high­ capacity broadband for anchor institutions and their communities.

“GeoLinks, formerly California Internet, is both thrilled and honored to officially join the SHLB Coalition,” said GeoLinks CEO Skyler Ditchfield. “Driven to continuously advance innovation in broadband delivery, GeoLinks plans to support the coalition by continuously contributing innovative ideas and issuing real world application of full turnkey network solutions to anchor institutions nationwide via our fixed wireless technology, ClearFiber™.”

The SHLB Coalition was created in 2009 to address the shortage of adequate broadband for schools, libraries, health clinics, and other community anchor institutions. The coalition, which includes the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN), the American Library Association (ALA), California Telehealth Network, Google, and Cisco, works with the Federal Communications Commission, the U.S. Department of Commerce, and other federal, state, and local government agencies to close the digital divide and create future­ ready communities.

“GeoLinks is an invaluable partner in promoting digital equity,” said SHLB Coalition Executive Director John Windhausen. “Not only is GeoLinks diving into cutting edge wireless technologies, it has also shown its strong commitment to connecting schools and libraries.”

The Internet has become a cornerstone of American life, learning and economic growth. It is the key infrastructure that anchors need to provide 21st century education, information, and health services to the public. To learn more about the SHLB Coalition and membership, visit http://www.shlb.org.

###

About GeoLinks:
Founded in 2011 by CEO, Skyler Ditchfield, and CTO, Ryan Hauf, GeoLinks is the fastest growing B2B fixed wireless Internet Service Provider in California. Proud to service the largest coverage area of any single fixed wireless provider in the state, GeoLinks expanded its territory in 2017 delivering enterprise­grade internet, layer 2 transport, and turnkey construction expertly tailored for all business and Anchor Institutions nationwide.

With industry leading installation times, GeoLinks’ flagship service, ClearFiber™, offers customers fixed wireless on the most resilient and scalable network ever built. Boasting ultra­low latency, 99.999% uptime, sub 10ms jitter, and a 4­hour max response time, GeoLinks prides itself on consistently delivering the industry’s best service level agreement.

Amongst its many accolades, GeoLinks was the largest construction grant winner for California K­12 schools and libraries in both 2016 and 2017. Servicing thousands of businesses across the country, GeoLinks officially became a CLEC and public utility in 2017.

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 from across the United States. To learn more, visit http://www.shlb.org

Fixed Wireless —A Viable Solution to Close the Digital Divide

California Internet CEO Skyler Ditchfield Presents Fixed Wireless as a Viable Solution to Close the Digital Divide at SHLB’s 7th Annual Convention

At SHLB’s 2017 Annual Convention, California Internet CEO Skyler Ditchfield took the stage addressing how and why California Internet’s fixed wireless technology is a viable solution when looking to close the digital divide in United States’ rural communities.

VENTURA, CA (PRWEB) JUNE 08, 2017

More than 300 attendees gathered at the Hyatt Regency in Arlington, Virginia last week, May 31st – June 2, 2017, for the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition’s 7th annual convention to discuss how industry leaders can connect rural anchor institutions and close the United States’ digital divide. With focus on how to build broadband networks in rural communities, California Internet’s CEO, Sklyer Ditchfield, took the stage sharing the proven success of fixed wireless technology and how it is a viable solution in closing the digital divide.

Accompanied by California Internet’s VP of Sales and Marketing, Phillip Deneef, Ditchfield began his address by reminiscing on his humble beginnings, affirming internet was fundamental in providing the tools and inspiration needed in his entrepreneurial journey. He continued by showcasing a variety of successful case studies that demonstrated how California Internet successfully deployed fixed wireless utilizing renewable energy, such as solar power and wind turbines, to connect extreme rural locations. Employing a 100% in-house approach to engineering, design, land procurement, construction, and data connectivity, Ditchfield further explained how fixed wireless is not only the fastest but also the most cost-effective solution available on the market today.CEO Skyler Ditchfield Presents Fixed Wireless

“I recognize the skepticism and wireless anxiety that people have surrounding fixed wireless technology,” stated Ditchfield. “People think that the technology is inherently flawed, when that’s just not the case. With proper engineering, it is not only possible, it’s feasible to connect rural anchor institutions, in effect, helping close our country’s digital divide. Myself, Phillip, and our entire team back in California, are driven to continuously advance innovation in broadband delivery, and that’s just what we’re doing. I want all rural anchor institutions to know that California Internet offers full turnkey solutions, from network instruction, to bandwidth delivery, via our innovative fixed wireless technology.”

Outside of his speech, Ditchfield and Deneef had the opportunity to further interface with newly inducted FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and SHLB Executive Director John Windhausen over dinner at Chesapeake Room. The evening allowed the regional carrier an opportunity to share and reiterate its experience and success using fixed wireless to reduce the digital divide. Ditchfield and Deneef’s efforts were met with understanding, appreciation and support.

“We are at a pivotal moment of change in our country, and schools, libraries, health providers, and other community anchor institutions (CAIs) have the power to unite and move us forward,” said SHLB Executive Director John Windhausen. “California Internet has proven that fixed wireless is a viable solution for our rural institutions.”

In the days following the convention, Ditchfield and Deneef met with various anchor entities to initiate the process of acquiring the funds needed to achieve their digital goals. With additional support from the recent passing of California’s AB 1665 Bill, California Internet is on a fast track for national expansion. Moving forward, California Internet plans to work towards securing additional grant money, developing strategic partnerships and expanding its metro footprint with a 100gbps backbone and ability to deliver 10gbps via fixed wireless.

For media inquiries or to schedule an interview with Skyler Ditchfield, please contact Lexie Olson at lolson(at)geolinks.com

About California Internet:

Founded in 2011 by CEO, Skyler Ditchfield, and CTO, Ryan Hauf, California Internet is the fastest growing B2B fixed wireless ISP in Los Angeles, California. With immediate access to California’s rural communities, California Internet services the largest coverage area of any single provider in California delivering enterprise-class internet, layer 2 transport, and turnkey construction that is expertly tailored for all businesses and Anchor Intuitions such as hospitals, libraries and schools.

With industry leading installation times, California Internet’s flagship service, ClearFiber™, offers customers fixed wireless on the most resilient and scalable network ever built. Boasting Sub 25MS latency, 99.99% uptime, sub 4ms jitter, and a 4-hour max repair time, California Internet is proud to offer the state’s best industry service level agreement.

Servicing thousands of businesses across the state, California Internet officially became a CLEC and public utility in 2017.

About SHLB:

The Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband (SHLB) Coalition was created in 2009 in Washington, D.C. to help address the shortage of adequate broadband for anchor institutions and their communities. [“SHLB” is pronounced “SHELL-bee”] The SHLB Coalition is a broad-based organization of anchor institutions, commercial companies and non-profit broadband providers, foundations, public interest groups, and others that work together to develop and support policies to improve broadband connectivity for anchor institutions and their communities in all regions of the country – urban, suburban and especially rural. We receive financial support from membership dues, from our events, and from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The SHLB Coalition is founded on the belief that deploying broadband networks to serve anchor institutions is a cost-efficient and vitally important investment in our nation’s future. Deploying broadband to anchor institutions can improve broadband access to millions of people (students, low-income and elderly people, migrants, etc.) who may not otherwise have access to the Internet. Anchor institution personnel can train people about broadband services and technologies, thereby stimulating broadband usage and demand. Furthermore, high-capacity “Middle Mile” broadband networks serving community anchor institutions can be used as “jumping off points” to serve surrounding residential and business consumers. Several studies show that building high-capacity broadband to community anchor institutions has a multiplier effect that generates tremendous economic growth for the community and the nation.