Tales from the Towers Chapter 58: Galactus vs. Guerilla Wireless – Our Boy is All Grown Up

A long time ago in a suburb far, far away, Guerilla Wireless was born. For too long, the masses had suffered with either poor or no internet or expensive single carrier options. Guerilla wireless was conceived to take over from the massive failure of poorly conceived mesh networks that failed under the weight of their over-priced, under-engineered equipment and designs. There was a hunger out there, a hunger that said, no more do we have to eat what is put in front of us or starve. Guerilla wireless fed that hunger with prices that competed with cable, at speeds exceeding DSL, and spit in the general direction of wireline. A little melodramatic maybe, but at least I didn’t mention HoHo’s.

Guerilla Wireless was built on early Ubiquiti 802.11a radios. The Ubiquiti radios were a perfect combination of inexpensive chipsets cleverly packaged to brave the great outdoors with GUI-based firmware even my mom could learn how to use. Time marched on and 802.11a became 802.11n and Ubiquiti kept making better, faster 802.11n along the same genre. Guerilla Wireless just kept getting better in the urban environment while keeping up with and surpassing DSL, but slowly falling behind cable. In the journey, Ubiquiti broke a few hearts among the 802.11n crowd by not delivering the GPS promise that would make Motorola/Cambium WISPs happy. Cambium eventually stepped in to develop 802.11n products, the ePMP line, that would sweep GPS-addicted designs off their feet, but it was late in the game. They are still developing 802.11n products that deliver promises Ubiquiti made 4 years ago for the 802.11n rural crowd. For urban or suburban areas, the problem now is simply the 4-year thing.

Ahh, but Ubiquiti didn’t look back, they said, “Pshaw.” Forget about 802.11n GPS, what difference does it make (okay, my obligatory Hillary reference to failure). We don’t need no stinkin’ 802.11n GPS, we got us here an 802.11ac chip and we can make it communicate. We believe we can take that Atheros chip to great heights, including GPS. And if GPS doesn’t work, we can fall back on AirPrism which promises adjacent channel filtering that’s better than adding more CowBell. And after a rocky start with T-Tommy Wheeler changing the FCC rules to whatever he was told to do last year, Ubiquiti is finally getting DFS mostly working in 802.11ac. AirPrism is out and as for GPS, I’m not sure yet. Check your local listing for times and channels. I don’t plan on deploying it at this point so I don’t have any experience with the products.

Okay, so what does this have to do with Guerilla Wireless, Galactus – Destroyer of Wired Worlds, or whether HoHo’s are the same formula since restarting production (I think not and definitely follow the expiration date as gospel or else you will be wishing you ate garbage dump sludge instead of an expired HoHo, don’t ask me how I know). I’ll let you in on a little secret, Galactus is simply Guerilla Wireless all grown up. Guerilla Wireless was good, Galactus will be great.

Since cable went from 5Mbps to 300Mbps, pushing copper as far as it can go (I know it can go farther but the runs have to be shorter (dang that pesky, speed, distance, quality physics thing). The reality is the next step is fiber for the cable companies and some of the DSL companies if your area is worthy of it. That means there are enough people willing to spend $80-$100 per month for that privilege. If you aren’t worthy, and probably 50% of the country or more isn’t at our income levels, then you can get 12Mbps as the CenturyLink rep at my door tried to sell me, or you have to live with cable and its notorious, consistent as clockwork, rate hikes. At a minimum, a certain percentage of their customers are bailing on the bundle thing every year and watching streaming services: 1.7 million in 2013, 1.2 million in 204. It’s like the last guy watching NBC return the cable box to Cox or Time Warner.

Now add in the courts saying that Roku, Apple, and any streaming set top box can be a cable box, and well, you know that you don’t want to be caught in the middle of a battle between cable companies, content providers, Apple, Google, Amazon, and NetFlix. It would be like getting stuck between two Sumo wrestlers while dressed as a giant rice ball. I’ll take odds that the cable companies lose and you want front row seats if you are a WISP. And this is where all roads lead to: Galactus – Destroyer of Wired Worlds.

Guerilla Wireless was designed to bypass the big boys and offer a cheaper alternative. When the big boys kept arming up, poor Guerilla Wireless was hampered by a puny 98-pound weakling 802.11n chipset at the AP. And although the innovative dual-polarity omni antenna has had a good run, and we still use them, it’s evident that the future of doing battle with wireline providers is going to require not only 802.11ac, but 802.11ac with attitude, innovation, and the some heavy duty weaponry. The King is dead, long live the King means Guerilla Wireless, our Ubiquiti based 802.11n suburban based wireless network is being upgraded into Galactus, our Mimosa based network built around the A5-360 APs to start.
Don’t get me wrong, we have already started deploying Ubiquiti AC products in new areas. The combination of multiple long-range antennas and faster processors at the AP are an incremental improvement for sector-based designs. That’s not what Galactus is though and for that, the dual-polarity omni needed an upgrade, not only in concept but in innovation. That’s where the A5-360 comes in. Instead vertical or horizontal polarity, it used four directional circular polarity to improve multi-pathing in high-density environments and reduce noise. And with the C5 already using a slant-45 antenna, some quick field tests have shown not only a significant signal and s/n improvement over a standard omni, we are seeing it even surpass sectors that we have up in a NLOS environment.

So with all the announcements at WISPA America concerning Mimosa, Ubiquiti, and Cambium, where does that fit into our strategy and the industry as a whole? Keep in mind that even though I do rural where 10Mbps is a Godsend to some people, Galactus is all about bandwidth, baby. In that context, here is what we see happening in our network. And what I’m saying isn’t based on hypothetical scenarios; it’s based on the fact we have been running almost 30 clients (and still growing) for the last 2 months in parallel to our Ubiquiti 802.11n and 802.11ac networks. Basically, I think I’ve got a pretty good handle on how this is all going to shake out, at least for Galactus – Destroyer of Wired Worlds (I just never get tired of saying that).
This is the part where we get inside my head. Over the last 4 months, I’ve been trying to guess the release dates of hardware, firmware that is more stable than Astatine, (yeah, you know you are going to have to look that one up but trust me when I tell you that certain beta firmware we tested didn’t even run as long as it’s half-life), and still keep up with the tremendous growth we were experiencing. Now add in the effort to upgrade everything to support that growth without investing in something that is pretty much end-of-life literally in weeks to stay competitive. I can balance cups and saucers in each hand while riding a unicycle with a baseball bat balancing on my nose better than I could make these decisions, and I can’t ride a unicycle.

Soooooooo, in October, we started installing Rocket 5AC-Lites with the idea we can start transitioning our clients over from the Rocket 5Ms we had on the same tower. Yeah, that didn’t work out so great, someone forget to make sure the batter was stirred enough. So we backtracked and started adding more Rocket 5Ms APs to alleviate the load our existing infrastructure was getting hit with. At one point between October and January 1, we had as many as 68 users on one Rocket 5M and not too many behind that on a few others. In the meantime, I was watching the race between getting our Mimosa test site up and firmware from Ubiquiti for the Rocket AC5-Lite radios to talk to 802.11n radios. Simultaneously, we were having some random problems (never solved) in another part of the state where we deployed all Ubiquiti AC products. I saw the problem go away with 7.2 firmware so that pretty much told us what the issue was. The Pepto-Bismol was flowing like the Mississippi river around our office.

My Christmas present came, not from Santa, but from Mimosa when a bunch of C5s and A5s showed up on my doorstep. We immediately started offloading some of our users to the A5s by swapping out their Ubiquiti radios in one area with C5s. Even though they were early beta, they worked right away. The Rocket 5Ms those users were attached to, was handling almost 50 users, so it was straining hard in the evening. After transferring about half of them, we had that particular Rocket 5M sector down to about 26 users and the same amount on the A5. Let the testing begin.

Yeah, I know that testing an 802.11n radio against an 802.11ac radio isn’t fair. Unfortunately, you can only test what you got. We did do a quick test between a Rocket 5AC-Lite with a 17dBi sector through trees to a Powerbeam 400-AC and an A5-360-14 to a C5 with the its internal 20dBi antenna. We didn’t have the backend capacity at this location to do more than 120Mbps and we also had the issue with firmware on the Ubiquiti causing some weird anomalies, so there was no way to do any side-by-side testing other than straight signal levels. And keep in mind this was early released firmware for Ubiquiti with only 5.8Ghz available and the Mimosa was on Day 1 beta firmware release. So given those limitations, we did check the signal levels between the radios and the PHY layers and we noticed this, through the trees and compensating for rated antenna gain numbers and setting the power to fixed levels on both radios, there was a was signal improvement of several dBi for the Mimosa pair. Without more testing, we can only guess one of a few things, antenna ratings aren’t matching the reality, power outputs aren’t really accurate, the combination of a circular polarity antenna connected to a slant-45 antenna works better either LOS or through vegetation, or the noise level was slightly lower for slant-45 but still leaves us with 3-6dBi difference we couldn’t account for. I can come up with a few more ideas but further testing in another location comparing a 19dBi sector with the Rocket 5M to a Nanostation 5M-Loco showed as much as a 10dBi+ difference with even more trees. In fact, the picture of this shot is on the front of our web page.

There are a lot of variables that could cause these differences so please, save your emails. I’m an engineer, I tried to minimize them the best I could to make the tests as close as possible within the limitations of time, effort, and frankly, my desire to get this beta test up as quickly as possible. What we did do, and again, this is the A5-360 14 against a Rocket 5M with a 19dBi AM-120 sector on the same pole, was to check signal levels as change out M radios on the roofs. In every case, the signal got much better and our results speak for themselves. Speed tests have no value here since we were also testing 80MHz channels and keeping a live system operational. We posted those results on Facebook and LinkedIn.
So you ask, where do you go from here? Well, all I can tell you is that it depends. We have been testing the A5 in areas where we replace short-range M radios and new areas with longer ranges of up to 1.5 miles (The A5-360 14 isn’t really designed for this, that’s where the A5-360 18 comes in but just for testing purposes, it hit -64dBm and as high as 360Mbps (PHY Layer). We are also testing Ubiquiti M radios talking to the A5-360 while simultaneously testing Rocket 5AC-Lites in the same scenario (hint, the firmware not to be mentioned is stable as of last Friday night, latest versions on the M and the AC side, and totally usable as we just converted 25 people over and it’s working well). So now with Ubiquiti having a stable migration path from 802.11n M series to 802.11ac, there are a lot of options.

In our case, where we only have to keep delivering up to 20Mbps, we are staying with the M radios and upgrading the APs from Rocket 5Ms to Rocket 5AC-Lites. In the areas where we have to deliver up to 50Mbps, we had already started deploying Ubiquiti AC radios and will stay with those for the time being. The latest firmware, 7.2 seems to be working very well for AC areas only. There is no upgrade path from Ubiquiti AC radios to Mimosa as AirMax is built into the chipset and can’t be turned off like it can in the M series. In new areas where we are head-to-head with cable and DSL providers and our service offerings start at 75Mbps, we are moving to Mimosa. Since we are pushing services up to 200Mbps and we have tested as high as 340Mbps in a real-world environment which isn’t even close to the full capacity of the AP, this will be our future against the wireline providers.

Just to add a wrinkle in all this, keep in mind that our entire Galactus model is based on the customer ROI being in 2-3 months, not 18 months or ungodly fiber ROIs of years. It can be deployed without millions of dollars of subsidies the government so freely gives to CenturyLInk to overrun underserved areas. It’s also based on a strategy that can deal with low to medium vegetative areas as our NLOS testing of the Mimosa gear has shown so far. Unfortunately, until the politicians (I wanted to use a harsher word here, but my wife, the censor, stopped me) decide it’s cheaper and more productive to give unlicensed spectrum to the free-market and let innovation and American ingenuity find better ways to deliver services than give it to unproductive companies like CenturyLink, deployments like Galactus — Destroyer of Wired Worlds — will be the exception, not the rule. However, just to be a complete jerk about the whole thing, we upgraded areas where CenturyLink got $500,000 to put in a whopping 25Mbps service with that still isn’t installed, with ahem (clearing my throat), 200Mbps IN YOUR FACE SERVICE starting at $55 for 75Mbps and going up from there (we have cheaper options coming when we can get more equipment). Coincidentally, the ROI on the customer side is 3 months depending on the mount. Wow, no taxpayer subsidies, what a concept. Some bureaucrat’s head must be exploding right now.

I am not sure what more you need to get started. The tools are there, Mimosa is real and has laid out the future, Ubiquiti is warming up more guys in the bullpen, Cambium is filling in NLOS holes with new equipment based on current product lines, and there are more backhaul options than I have baseballs in my garage. It’s time to quit watching NetFlix and start delivering it.


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About Rory Conaway

Rory Conaway has been in the IT and Wireless Industries for the past 25 years as an author and consultant. He currently operates a growing WISP operation in Southern Arizona. He consults with investors, manufacturers, and WISPs, and develops financial business models for startups. In addition to writing articles in industry publications such as Mission Critical Magazine, Mr. Conaway also writes the series “Tales from the Towers” that can be found on various such as www.triadwireless.net and www.muniwireless.com. He has also engineered several wireless designs such as S.P.I.R.I.T. and Guerilla Wireless as well as building integrated wireless and video surveillance for airport security, municipal and critical infrastructure, SCADA systems, and hotel/MDU deployments.


  1. Stefan Englhardt says

    These Mimosa Antennas are quite amazing. Hope they get them out of the door and hope they get the SW done.
    At the moment they do plain 801.11ac in PTMP and no GPS. So there is the old RTS/CTS mechanism needed to reduce the CPEs hammering each other. I guess the system scales once there is a TDMA protocol implemented.

    I am very curious what the answer of UBNT will be. There Omnis work but they are very low gain compared to the Mimosa Antenna.

  2. Come to east Tennessee man!! Build it and they will come.

  3. Always enjoy reading your stuff. Keep up the good work.

  4. Rory Conaway says

    I tried to get into Tennessee about 6 years ago, couldn’t put together sufficient funding for that expansion with the way the economy was. I think there are some pretty good WISPS out there now though.

    TDMA is on the schedule for about 2-3 months. It will be a firmware upgrade.

  5. I wonder how many clients you have on your network as a total and what are the noise levels. In out case, we have 6000+ customers with noise > -80, and the max speed we can provide is 6mbit/s in PtMP using RocketMs (we never use channel width bigger than 20mhz)

  6. Rory Conaway says

    Our noise levels vary but keep in mind that our density is very, very high. The A5s will adapt to the noise by moving around.

  7. Hi Rory,
    Are you using the AC-Lite AP with M and AC mixed clients? Our Rocket M AP’s max out at around 50 Mbps.throughput Is this what you are seeing?

    How much throughput are you getting on the at the AP on the AC-Lite?

  8. bernie diesen says

    Sure wish I could put a ISP together here in Southern Teller County, Colorado to compete with Rise Broadband! They have methodologically added many, many new customers over the past 3 years and not updated any transmitters. Guess what. saturation. I can’t get anything over 4mb up and .8mb down on a GOOD day [mostly 3.2mb down and .5mb up and sometimes 1mb down and .1mb up]. My IP phones are clear down – but breakup going out. No competition “so suck-it-up” I am told. Maybe someday they just might upgrade?

    I am an old retired computer network geek – but I would love to get some engineers and marketers together with me and form a competing company!

  9. I’m getting up and running right now and like you, I see now as the time to deliver massive bandwidth. I’m going to small towns and rural areas that are relatively flat. One problem I’ve run into though for delivering service as you are is the Rocket AC limited throughput. In PTMP mode it can only get about 450M throughput. Offering 200M it seems like the max number of users I could put on the one AP would be about 10-12 before my oversubscription becomes a service issue and what I want to do is offer the best darned service around! So what is it that you’re doing to achieve this? What’s your AP to customer ratio on average? And how much bandwidth are you using per customer on the backhaul? And are you backhauling directly to an IXP or buying wholesale from a Tier 1 or 2 fiber internet supplier?

  10. Rory Conaway says

    On the A5, you can do 30-40 customers if you are guaranteeing 200Mbps on average, more if you are offering slower services. We just started offering the 200Mbps but most people are happy with 75Mbps which is what Comcast offers. We are providing up to 600Mbps per AP and that’s all done over wireless. However, we are working tirelessly to get that upgraded further. We want to bring in 2Gbps to handle this area and we just upgraded out router for it. Now we are working on getting the connectivity to the router.

    I really don’t think a Rocket AC-Lite can pull 450Mbps. We average them about 150Mbps, depending on how far the clients are and using a 40Mbps channel for PMPT.

  11. bernie diesen says

    Can any of give me a simple diagram of equipment and deployment needed for a Guerilla Wireless network. I am trying to understand the economics of such a deployment in Teller County, Co. Seems to me, equipment for a PMP distribution of 50 customers @ 25mb each[1gb] could be paid for in a matter of months. Am I wrong somewhere? 200Mbps IN YOUR FACE SERVICE starting at $35 for 25Mbps. Is this total down + up [25mb]. This would be a tremendous improvement over what is available now.
    You can email me at oldgloryhill@hotmail.com . Put “CO deployment” in title so it doesn’t get lost my junk mail

  12. Is it just me or is this thing inserting odd videos right into the middle of the posts?

    I’m not using the Lite’s. I’m using the R5AC PTMP air prism devices. At least that’s what my vendor suggested. The R5AC PTMP shows that it maxes out at about 330 Mb @ 40mhz in PTMP mode. It will do more in PTP mode with 80Mhz channels. Should I actually be using a “Lite”? for this for some reason? Seems counter-intuitive but many things are.

    And yes, I’m still trying to get a grasp on the economics of this 200M service and higher as well. Time Warner just rolled out 300×20 in my area.

    Bernie – you are correct for the most part. The recapture of the initial investment CAN happen in a few months but you have to manage the logistics of getting the customers signed up, installed, billed, and collected from in that time to make that a reality. So you really have to be realistic about how many customers you can physically hook up in a given period of time – like per week. So for instance, in any given week you would need to turn up maybe 15 customers which means to sell AND install 3 per day. But to work at that pace you can’t do it alone and still maintain the network and anything else you need to do like a day job for instance. If you subcontract it, it will add to the time it takes to recapture as well by increasing the cost. In my case, I have two geek sons that are shareholders in the corporation I formed. They work for free. One sells, One installs, and I bill and manage. Since they’re family, they’re exempt from minimum wage laws but of course before we’re done, their stock alone will be incredibly valuable. 🙂

  13. bernie diesen says

    Sounds like a great opportunity! I need a schematic of what a beginning network would look like and equipment choices both PTMP for distribution and PTP for back haul. Then I would need to raise so funds. I feel I am up for the challenge but need lots more info.

    I am a retired network geek so tech stuff I can learn quickly – just need 2 slave geeks like you suggest – maybe a couple of my retire friends.

    Thanks for your input

  14. I’m gonna shoot you an email to establish some direct communications with you. In the meantime, I hope someone else, preferably the author, can answer my specific questions above that will help us both. 🙂

  15. bernie diesen says



    Put ISP WiFi in Subject so it does not get lost in my junk mail


  16. Sorry. too late. I used “CO deployment” as mentioned above.

  17. Rory Conaway says

    The reality of any WISP is that you need to get to about 500 users with an ARPU of about $60 per month to make it work. The sad part is that most WISPs run out of startup funds by then and can’t make the tier investment to go the next step. Anything less than that and you have a hobby, not a business. What you can do is find business customers simultaneously that can help get you to that $30K monthly income level. The ROI numbers that you thinking you can achieve do not include all the infrastructure costs.

    If you start from scratch, your ROI is about 24 months, give or take 6 months, depending on your market, what percentage of revenue is business customers, and assuming you can keep costs reasonable. The catch is that it also assumes you have access to 5 or 6 skill and business sets. I’m not trying to dissuade anyone, I’m trying to prepare you. This is information I didn’t have when I started and it cost me years to understand it. Now that I do, we are seeing growth rates of 400% but we also have the key skill sets and infrastructure assets already in place. If you don’t, make sure you can raise those funds when you get to a few hundred users or have a plan in place to make that leap. The Mimosa equipment is a game changer in that it lets you compete in areas you couldn’t a couple years ago.

  18. This is some of the best advice I’ve seen so I advise anyone considering this to consider it carefully. There is no “easy money”.
    Of course the ROI question is really going to be different in every case. For example, if I were to find a trailer park of 50 trailers out in the country where all they have is dial-up and satellite, but I happen to know there’s a Zayo fiber passing down the road in front of it and there are extra strands in it they’re willing to sell me, I can usually buy a 100M dedicated service from them for about $1200 per month. If I then convince the park ownership to put up a 50 ft pole and I’ll give the office free internet in exchange for the ability to sell it, I can end up in good shape. I would pre-sell the area once I qualified it. I would go around to each residence and explain that if I get enough people to sign up, I’ll put it in. And if not, I won’t and they’re under no obligation. Those who want it will then be actively helping those who aren’t interested to change their minds. If I just sell 40 of them 30M at $85 per month, that’s $3400 per month. $2000 gross profit for this one park and they’re still spending less than their satellites. 🙂 My only investment being a UBNT Omni, router, a small machine running Radius, and CPE at about $65 per trailer. Say $3000 out of pocket. I’ve recaptured at month 2. And if I charge a $75 install fee for each one, I’m even the first month of billing. And if I sell 15 of them 75M service upgrades for $125 per month, I’m a SUPERSTAR! 🙂

    Of course, that’s small enough to call ” a hobby”. By the time you paid taxes you haven’t made a lot. and it rests on a lot of “IF”s. There’s nothing wrong with that. To repeat this over and over you really have to know exactly what you’re looking for. If you have equipment on a tower a few miles away, you might be able to get away with a point to point from your tower to the park without even needing the fiber though. It could be done literally a dozen different ways and the key to making it all work is your ability to decide which of them is indeed the best approach. But if you can get 10 trailer parks like this at $2000 per month gross profit per trailer park, you’re pulling in $20,000 per month without ever spending more than a couple thousand bucks. But you still have to sell it, install it, bill it, collect on it, service it, and deal with silly phone calls “My iphone isn’t connecting to the intrnet”….”OK. Can you tell me if your router is on?” …”Oh, I know it’s off. It was ugly so I unplugged it and put it in a drawer.”… “OK. We’ll take care of this. Put your phone in the drawer with the router. You’re not smart enough to use it.”

    I’m just now getting going but I’m fortunate enough to have been a Large Enterprise account exec for two major telecoms over the last 10 years. I’ve spent countless days filling in for sales engineers over the years as my access to others in different departments grew as I got to know people over the years. It’s not like Field of Dreams where “If you build it, they will come”. People need to be prepared to go out and SELL it. They have to market it. They have to position themselves properly in the marketplace, and on and on and on. I also happen to be single now for 3 years and my combination of room additions and aggressive payment on my mortgage gives me plenty of capital to work with. So I’m going All-in. My only real weak point is wireless itself but I’m learning. It’s not nearly as cut and dried as fiber, coax, or UTP. You can’t just stick a repeater in the middle of your path to increase your signal with wireless. You can’t route around high voltage power lines or cut a path through the trees on the road. And trees, as much as I like them, can be incredibly rude. They change size and shape on you. They become nearly transparent and then in a month blow up like Fat B@stard. They agree to let you through sometimes but will rescind that on a whim if they have a lot to drink.
    But that’s why I follow this blog. So I can learn those quirks. 🙂

    And what I can’t seem to grasp here is the equipment you are using to pull that much throughput for that many customers, how many 200M customers you have per AP, and what you’re over-subscription ratio is. My vendor recommended Rocket5 AC PTMP devices. I can get 100 users on them but in PTMP mode I’m limited to 40mhz channels and about 330M of throughput. I don’t see how I could even think of getting 50 customers on there with 200Mx10M service when the total throughput is only 330M in PTMP mode. Did my vendor recommend the wrong devices? I went to the UBNT site and the Rocket Prism PTMP is now finally available but I don’t see any indication that the throughput itself has improved. Just the noise profiles which I suppose means I could stack more APs. But that’s why I have to get this customer per AP ration for 200M service nailed down. So any help here you could offer, Rory, would be GREATLY appreciated. I have a plan right now that will have 8 APs with 45 degree sector antennas going up at the very top of a cell tower where Nextel used to be. I have a gig fiber to the site. But I’m trying to avoid having to add equipment in the first year. Each time I add equipment I have to pay for a new structural survey and then pay the tower climbers to put it on. So it’s like $3000-$3500 to add an AP later or right now it’s nothing extra except a monthly tower lease fee of $90 per device.

    So I REALLY hope you can get back to me on those questions. You have no idea how much I would appreciate your opinion here.

  19. Rory Conaway says

    My deployments aren’t on towers. You have to keep customers very close to do 200Mbsp. The Mimosa A5-360 14s have zero downtilt and are built for deployments where the clients are roughly at the same level as the APs. In that scenario, You need to keep the users fairly close in that environment although we have tested out to 1.5 miles with the C5 and we are still pulling -66dBm and 360Mbps PHY layer. The Mimosa A5-360 18 has 4 degrees of downtilt but if you use it on a tower, you will get more noise the higher it goes. If you have to do it today, you use Rocket 5 AC-Lites with Ubiquiti antennas and RF Armor shield kits. I’m running multiple radios on a single pole in the same frequency with those things.

    If you want to start with lower modulation rates but stay with the Mimosa’s, get an A5-360 18, put it on a tower, and start connecting your closer clients. As soon as you can upgrade to sectors, get the Mimosa A5 or B5s and get the KPP sector antennas for them. That should increase the modulation rates a significant amount to get your 200Mbps options out 2 miles with the C5 and up to 4 miles with the C5c and an external antenna.

  20. Rory what’s Your opinion about selling internet+tv+phone using Mimosa hardware? I ask because don’t know if I should invest in wifi, fiber costs too much for me

  21. Rory Conaway says

    I’m not a fan of triple play solutions in my markets. I think Cable TV is going the way of the Dodo with NetFlix, Apple, Google, Amazon, and the ala carte system we are moving towards. Same with phone with companies like Ooma providing phone for $4 per month average. I see a straight bandwidth play with other options available like home automation to raise the ARPU. We are looking at another idea also but I can’t share it yet.

  22. I agree with Rory. Triple play is so dead. When I lived in Paris, I got Orange France’s triple play (cable, phone, Internet) and I ended up not watching much cable (except the Tour de France) and I disconnected the phone (because I only got telemarketing and wrong-number calls). In the US, I have Comcast/Xfinity, but I don’t even have a TV. The cable set top box and all its accoutrements are still in their original packaging, unopened, gathering dust somewhere in the garage. Obviously, I don’t have a “landline” phone because American telemarketing is even more aggressive than its French counterpart.

  23. kevin: I will answer your question, contrary to peoples belief on peak times our customers use an average of 1 Mbps to 1.5 Mbps from total bandwidth. Some evenings like Thu and Fri maybe goes up to 2 Mbps for just couple of hours. Our users can stream Netflix HD with any of our plans.
    I also consider Rory 24 Month ROI pretty accurate. We are only offering service in the arias where DSL and satellite guys are … and we don’t need to go as crazy with speeds as Rory is going since competing with cable will be our second phase of the project.
    We are pretty comfortable offering up to 50 Mbps plans but comparing with what DSL(max up to 5Mbps) is offering we really have no competition.
    Rory hope we can meet for a chat and a coffee one day … we are in the same state and sooner or later is going to happen … maybe we have to become bigger 🙂
    BTW – Love Love your drive and excitement about where wireless technology is going … but I already told you that before 🙂 … keep up the good fight … maybe one day we will force the politicians see our achievements even without big bucks that cable has.
    Hope to get my hands on some Mimosa equipment to see what they can do.

  24. bernie diesen says

    I am not sure what customers you have but speaking as a customer of poor wireless service, my IP phones barely work at3.75 Mbs down and .75 Mbs up [and I rarely get that much]. And video demands are even greater – at least 2 Mbs up. 25 Mbs down and 5 Mbs up should be a minimum base line of service for all wireless customers!

    The equipment is not expensive any more…………. Just no competition! Same equipment in place for over 8 years and they keep adding more subscribers.

  25. Thanks for the response. I’ve worked for Windstream and Time Warner Business class as an outside Large Enterprise Account Exec for a little over 9 years between the two of them. Peak traffic is a reality. It’s spread out a little more than a lot of people think. But 9am to 11am, 330pm to 530pm, and 7pm to 9pm are all heavy usage periods. During the summer is thins out – especially in the 330-530 slot since that’s the kids just getting home from school.
    What is your capacity on your network? If its 2-3M then a 1.5M average usage wouldn’t surprise me. People tend not to attempt things when they know they don’t work well. So they may not be heavily streaming if they expect it to be problematic. Also, if they don’t feel they can cut out the satellite completely, they’ll keep it and if it’s more reliable than streaming they won’t stream. I could be wrong of course but it’s been my experience that people will utilize about 75% of what’s available whether it’s 3M or 100M through a process which I’ll now give a name of “subconscious self-throttling”. Now if I can just come up with proof and an algorithm that accurately predicts it, I should be in line for a Nobel! And I may have answered my own question at the same time! lol Man I crack myself up sometimes!

  26. bernie diesen says

    Well, like I was alluding to—- wireless bandwidth needs boosting, particularly in deep rural areas. Everything is going to the internet – ip phones, tv, video surveillance, smart home communication from refrigerators to toilets! I still want to see a minimum level of service. Right now its 5 Mbs but maybe not if the network is over loaded with no minimum guarantee. This is BS service. Sorry if I stepped on any bodies toes.

  27. Oh. Not mine. I wasn’t replying to you. I was replying to Zero. The comments thread doesn’t show that like a lot of the newer ones do. My plan is to put a minimum of 30M out there an as much as 100M for rural residents. The coming of remote medicine is going to be more beneficial to them than anyone and yet for the moment they’re the least capable of taking advantage of it. I want to change that or at least be a large part of that change. Even with the USF fund, the gap has still continued to grow. The money is being mis-used and we haven’t been able to qualify for the funds. But I’m putting in an application for them in my state this year since the FCC considers me a regulated utility/telecom now. I’m already prepared to be declined and ready to file suit over it if needed. Even if I lose, maybe the attention will drive some change to the language of the laws.

  28. bernie diesen says

    good for you! Keep us all posted on your application for monies.