US communications network provider Windstream has set up a strategic partnership with Cambridge Broadband Networks (CBNL) and Straight Path Communications to expand its last-mile fixed wireless options for its customers in 40 markets across the country.
CBNL, based in Cambridge, UK, is providing its millimetre wave licensed point-to-multipoint (PMP) small cells, while Straight Path is providing its licensed millimetre wave spectrum.
Windstream will deploy CBNL’s VectaStar 39GHz licensed point to multi-point (PtMP) radios and will use Straight Path’s 39GHz spectrum to expand its last-mile customer connectivity options in key markets.
The expansion is part of Windstream’s previously disclosed capital investment plan, and the partnership with CBNL and Straight Path will significantly scale coverage of Windstream’s fixed wireless technology and allow customers to diversify their networks by integrating fibre, copper and fixed wireless access technologies.
The licensed spectrum and radios being used to deliver the service ensure that it is more robust and secure than other wireless technologies and offers end-customers reliable service level agreements.
This new technology will allow Windstream customers to access the company’s advanced data, voice, network and cloud services at speeds of up to 275 Mbps full duplex, and it also supplements Windstream’s other fixed wireless access technologies that range in speed from 1 Mbps to 1 Gbps.
Windstream will enhance seven of its markets where it currently offers fixed wireless access technology – Chicago, New York City, Boston, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Milwaukee and Little Rock. Windstream will also deploy CBNL equipment in 33 new markets where it will begin offering its fixed wireless technology.
Those markets include: Atlanta, Baltimore, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Detroit, Kansas City, Miami, Minneapolis, Nashville, Oklahoma City, Phoenix, Richmond, San Antonio, Seattle and St. Louis. Under the agreement, Windstream has the option of eventually expanding fixed wireless to an additional 32 markets where Straight Path owns 39GHz spectrum.
The partnership among Windstream, CBNL and Straight Path is the latest example of Windstream investing in its advanced metro fibre and fixed wireless networks, and it also represents the first nationwide deployment of CBNL’s new 39GHz solution, which has the ability to scale hub site capacities to 13.2 Gbps.
This latest announcement closely follows Windstream’s successful VectaStar network in New York City, which utilised Straight Path’s 28GHz spectrum.
Joe Harding, chief marketing officer at Windstream, said: “It’s clear that millimetre wave offers immense potential. As one of the most proven and efficient millimetre wave technologies, VectaStar was the simple choice for Windstream. We look forward to rolling out the first deployments later this year and improving access to faster broadband speeds for businesses across the country.”
Lionel Chmilewsky, chief executive officer at CBNL, said: “Delivering up to 13.2 Gbps per hub site and total cost of ownership savings of up to 50% compared to point-to-point, VectaStar provides Windstream with a ground-breaking business case. This is further supported by the reuse of spectrum where VectaStar’s dynamic µ-TDMA can offer up to 4.4 Gbps of provisioned capacity per sector from just two 50MHz channel pairs.”