A new local option for high-speed internet service for homes, farms, and businesses launched in Fountain, Peterson and Spring Valley.

According to a release from MiBroadband, a combination of Mabel Cooperative Telephone Company, MiEnergy Cooperative and Spring Grove Communications revealed they were in the early stages of making high-speed internet a reality for underserved rural areas via fixed wireless broadband.

According to the release, a fixed wireless broadband service works in a similar fashion to cell phone communication with an antenna on a tower to carry the signal to the customer’s fixed location. A radio at the customer’s home, farm or business receives the signal from an antenna on a tower. Customers do need a line of sight to the antenna, which can send a signal approximately five to seven miles.

MiEnergy Cooperative has placed a monopole at each of its substations serving the Fountain, Peterson and Spring Valley areas. The monopoles are part of the electric co-op’s infrastructure to allow for a broadband connection that sends data from the substation to MiEnergy’s office to allow for improved electric reliability.

Those monopoles with broadband connections are what allow MiBroadband to offer high-speed internet service to rural areas that are unserved or underserved.

“Antennas on the monopoles cover 360 degrees. Using tall structures helps overcome obstructions such as trees, hills, and buildings that may interfere with service,” says Jill Fishbaugher, MiBroadband’s CEO.

The antenna installations were completed in October. MiBroadband then began installing service to those who were on a waiting list for service. Fishbaugher explained that fixed wireless broadband has a lot to offer.

“It is faster and more reliable than what cellular carriers can provide. When compared to DSL you don’t see internet speeds limited by distance from the provider’s main office,” Fishbaugher said. “With cable-based service, a neighborhood shares a finite amount of capacity which can degrade service at peak times. Fixed wireless doesn’t have those limitations.”

“While MiBroadband is not a cooperative, it is owned by cooperatives who have a history of providing excellent customer service. Those same expectations on customer service carry over to this business to serve those who have had no options or who have had limited options for broadband,” Fishbaugher said.

Fishbaugher said that anyone that is interested in more information about the service or what they offer should contact them and inquire how MiBroadband can be of service.

“We have employees that can assess your location for service and explain what we provide and help you create a customized network that fits your needs and lifestyle from the very basic internet service needs to the more advanced,” Fishbaugher says. “We can also help answer questions about streaming services like Hulu and YouTube TV or streaming devices like Amazon’s Fire and Roku.”

If you are looking for more information about MiBroadband call 507-886-6422 or toll-free at 866-882-6422. Information is also available online at www.MiBroadband.com.

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