Suburban Broadband Wireless Equipment Launched

While broadband wireless equipment traditionally has targeted rural deployments, a new offering launched today by Mimosa Networks is designed specifically for suburban deployment, explained Mimosa Vice President of Marketing Brad Day in an interview. The new suburban broadband wireless offering boasts total bandwidth of up to a gigabit per second per access point, Day explained.

In a typical installation, total bandwidth would be shared between 20 to 30 subscribers, enabling a typical customer to get speeds in the range of 250 to 300 Mbps, he said. The equipment is designed to serve customers located within 500 meters of the access point, which can be connected to fiber or wireless backhaul infrastructure.

The Mimosa equipment operates in the same unlicensed 5 GHz band that also supports WiFi, raising the question of potential interference issues. But according to Day, interference isn’t a problem.

“It’s important to be efficient with [spectrum] re-use . . . in order to operate in high-noise environments,” he said.

“We adjust the transmit power and the gain to operate above the noise floor,” he added.

He also noted that although the Mimosa equipment can interwork with WiFi, “to get intelligent use of the spectrum, [the equipment] needs to be in proprietary mode.”

Suburban Broadband Wireless Provider Sail

Mimosa has offered point-to-point broadband wireless equipment for some time and the multipoint offering also has seen some deployments. San Francisco Bay Area service provider Sail Internet already has deployed the technology to support a $50-a-month Internet service – and as Day explained, Sail has used some compelling marketing tactics.

For example, Sail has used social media and online complaints to identify areas where end users are dissatisfied with their broadband options and has targeted deployments to those areas. The company also targets specific homes to house the access point in exchange for subsidized Internet service. “They identified homes based on how [cost] effectively they can get wireless backhaul from a fiber provider and where they have good line of site to a fiber provider,” Day explained.

Service providers needn’t be limited to offering only broadband service over the Mimosa infrastructure, Day said. He noted that Sail offers an over-the-top video service targeting cord cutters and that other Mimosa customers have used the point-to-point equipment to support IP telephony. He cautioned, though, that service providers will need to take the bandwidth of OTT video into account in designing services that include a video offering.