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Sprint Expanding its Broadband Wireless Service

Sprint (www.sprintbroadband.com), is hoping to convert those frustrated by the slow progress of DSL into their neighborhoods, into fixed wireless broadband customers. The new service is based on fixed wireless technology. Unlike mobile wireless, fixed wireless uses a stationary digital transceiver at the home or business receiving the service. The transceiver is pointed toward a radio transmission tower to send and receive a signal. The digital transceiver is 13.5 inches by 13.5 inches, diamond-shaped device. Sprint states that its new service will be secure due to its routing-based architecture, which will allow packets to only be transmitted to the specific receiving network address.

In order to receive the service, a customer must have line-of-sight to Sprint's transmission towers; however, assuming this condition is met, the service can be activated from homes or businesses 35 miles away. Sprint is hoping that this will allow them to penetrate into rural and suburban areas neglected by other broadband providers.

The new broadband service provides an average downstream rate of 1mb/second. The two-way fixed wireless technology is always connected and comes bundled with EarthLink Sprint Internet service. According to Sprint, installation will normally take place within two weeks of an order.

"Sprint is providing a fast, simple and affordable new broadband option for thousands of Bay Area residents who are frustrated with or unable to get high-speed Internet connectivity," said Rene Wukich, general manager of Sprint Broadband Direct in San Jose.

Sprint is beginning to rollout its service today in Silicon Valley, and plans to extend the service to the Oakland, California/ East Bay area by November and to San Francisco by the beginning of 2001. Previously, Sprint has made the service commercially available in Phoenix and Tuscon, Arizona.

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