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Optimum Wi-Fi: A roaming wi-fi network so expansive its paradigm shifting?


gangrene
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Cablevision has been aggressively building out this network across its entire footprint over the past two years using bel-air hot spots.

 

You can spot them on almost every street corner hanging off of utility poles.

 

Would make sense for them to make a sort of Republic Wireless MVNO deal with Sprint wouldn't it?

 

Its available for free to all customers and once you register your mac address with the network you connect to it automatically and can treat it almost like a cellular network.

 

optimum-wifi-coverage-map1.png

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Duffman, I think it's free for their subscribers. I have also heard that cable MSO's are talking about free roaming on each other's networks.

 

Comcast has WiFi sites around Philadelphia (maybe elsewhere), access is included with internet service. The interesting thing is that everywhere I see an Xfinitywifi hotspot I also see Optimum and one other one. It looks like they are sharing already.

 

PJ

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You would think a city wide WiFi system like this would cause a lot of interference issues for other WiFi systems and would render the channels being broadcast virtually useless to any other WiFi router in the city.

 

That would probably be fine, if it was limited to only one company in one market in one 20MHz channel. However, if more than one were to ever set up, or go with a 40MHz WiFi setup, it could be complete chaos. Cable cos better be respectful of this unlicensed spectrum, or it may cause the FCC to crack down on 2.4GHz spectrum usage.

 

Just thinking out loud. I do really like the idea. Just hope it's really thought through to be a good neighbor.

 

Robert via NOVO7PALADIN Tablet using Forum Runner

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Their municipal wifi network has had a widespread deployment for at least two years without any known interference issues.

 

From my experience, 2.4ghz crowding only seems to be a serious issue for apartment dwellers, its sort of a hyper-local thing caused by tenants in a building running 50 different wifi networks.

 

The more interesting wrinkle is that the next iteration of bel-air hotspots will be technically capable of broadcasting an LTE signal.

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From my experience' date=' 2.4ghz crowding only seems to be a serious issue for apartment dwellers, its sort of a hyper-local thing caused by tenants in a building running 50 different wifi networks.[/quote']

Maybe Optimum was created in an effort to help reduce the number of WiFi networks and interference in high population density areas? Just a thought.

 

Sent via Forum Runner on my redsn0w iOS 5.1 iPhone 4 

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Maybe Optimum was created in an effort to help reduce the number of WiFi networks and interference in high population density areas? Just a thought.

 

Sent via Forum Runner on my redsn0w iOS 5.1 iPhone 4 

 

It was created as a "value added" service, its an asset that helps them retain customers in light of extremely fierce competition from FIOS.

 

IIRC. During a recent shareholder meeting they announced that they were spending an additional $240 million on infrastructure with at least half of that going to expand the Optimum Wifi footprint.

 

I'd suspect that their infrastructure is going to play a major role in easing Sprint network congestion within the NYC Metro Area. They have an existing relationship with Sprint (Cablevision bundles Sprint services at a discount as part of their Optimum Business packages).

 

I mean, assuming that automatic WIFI off-loading will be a key component of Sprint's upcoming connection optimizer software.

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I would love to hear Robert's opinion on the expansion of WIFI off-loading, it seems like it could even be mandatory in some markets, especially on the pre-paid side.

 

Time Warner is apparently in the midst of a similar deployment throughout the greater Los Angeles area.

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I would love to hear Robert's opinion on the expansion of WIFI off-loading, it seems like it could even be mandatory in some markets, especially on the pre-paid side.

 

Time Warner is apparently in the midst of a similar deployment throughout the greater Los Angeles area.

 

I dislike the thought of mandatory anything. I think the wireless carriers need to contract roaming deals with WiFi offloaders like Towerstream. And in a case like that, I wouldn't mind if my device WiFi roamed automatically onto a network that is equal or better than the Sprint LTE network.

 

Robert

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I dislike the thought of mandatory anything. I think the wireless carriers need to contract roaming deals with WiFi offloaders like Towerstream. And in a case like that, I wouldn't mind if my device WiFi roamed automatically onto a network that is equal or better than the Sprint LTE network.

 

Robert

 

I agree that I wouldn't want the QOS to be negatively impacted and would expect the WIFI networks to be of a certain quality. I think the key is that the software sceme that manages this sort of HOME/MUNI/MSO/Wholesale Wi-Fi off-loading would have to be relatively seamless.

 

But I also see this as a possible post-paid/pre-paid differentiator, something that could be completely user configurable on the post-paid side and an automated measure that keeps costs down on the pre-paid side.

 

I find this whole concept to be very interesting because most existing smartphones, including all of the non-WiMax Android phones on Boost and Virgin could be updated to take advantage of it.

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I agree that I wouldn't want the QOS to be negatively impacted and would expect the WIFI networks to be of a certain quality, and would hope that the software sceme that manages this sort of HOME/MUNI/MSO/Wholesale Wi-Fi off-loading would be relatively seamless.

 

But I also see this as a possible post-paid/pre-paid differentiator, something that could be completely user configurable on the post-paid side and an automated measure that keeps costs down on the pre-paid side.

 

I also find it interesting because most existing smartphones, including all of the non-WiMax Android phones on Boost and Virgin could be updated to take advantage of it.

 

I'm OK with the optimizer concept that Sprint is deploying. Because you can turn it off. However, I was addressing the mandatory part that was commented above. In the case of a pre-paid plan, I guess mandatory bothers me less. However, even Republic Wireless doesn't have mandatory WiFi usage through device control. There is just consequences for using too much data. I think I would prefer that for prepaid plans too. I think it's the Libertarian in me. :)

 

Robert

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I'm OK with the optimizer concept that Sprint is deploying. Because you can turn it off. However, I was addressing the mandatory part that was commented above. In the case of a pre-paid plan, I guess mandatory bothers me less. However, even Republic Wireless doesn't have mandatory WiFi usage through device control. There is just consequences for using too much data. I think I would prefer that for prepaid plans too. I think it's the Libertarian in me. :)

 

Robert

 

I guess mandatory bothers me to a certain extent, but I was floating the idea because I was under the impression that the upcoming WiMAX devices on Boost were going to operate under some sort of mandatory on "4G if available" restriction.

 

Is it known if that is the case or not?

 

I was also thinking in terms that I would readily support whatever measures allowed Sprint to retain "truly unlimited" data the longest and that this sort of thing would probably be another weapon that Sprint could use to alleviate network strain in metro areas and improve the user experience for everyone overall. :)

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I guess mandatory bother me to a certain extent but I was floating the idea because I was under the impression that the upcoming WiMAX devices on Boost were going to operate under some sort of mandatory on "4G if available" restriction.

 

I was also thinking in terms that I would readily support whatever measures allowed Sprint to retain "truly unlimited" data the longest and that this sort of thing would probably be another weapon that Sprint could use to alleviate network strain in metro areas and improve the user experience for everyone overall. :)

 

With a solid LTE network, Sprint should have no problems maintaining truly unlimited smartphone data for a long time...even with partners, MVNO's and prepaid divisions. Especially considering the deep spectrum resources that Sprint can exploit in Clearwire.

 

However, unauthorized tethering will likely start being cracked down on. AT&T now sends messages to users devices when they are doing unauthorized tethering. I expect Sprint to first crack down on heavy unauthorized tetherers, and will likely then move on to crack down on all unauthorized tetherers if they have to. Using LTE as an unlimited home ISP is not going to be allowed by any network. We don't have enough spectrum to do that except in probably rural and remote tertiary markets.

 

The people who have enjoyed that in the past just need to be happy for the years they were able to do that. It's just a luxury that will not be sustainable in the future.

 

Robert

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With a solid LTE network, Sprint should have no problems maintaining truly unlimited smartphone data for a long time...even with partners, MVNO's and prepaid divisions. Especially considering the deep spectrum resources that Sprint can exploit in Clearwire.

 

However, unauthorized tethering will likely start being cracked down on. AT&T now sends messages to users devices when they are doing unauthorized tethering. I expect Sprint to first crack down on heavy unauthorized tetherers, and will likely then move on to crack down on all unauthorized tetherers if they have to. Using LTE as an unlimited home ISP is not going to be allowed by any network. We don't have enough spectrum to do that except in probably rural and remote tertiary markets.

 

The people who have enjoyed that in the past just need to be happy for the years they were able to do that. It's just a luxury that will not be sustainable in the future.

 

Robert

 

Funny you should say that, I know several people in Queens who are using Rooted WiMAX devices as their primary home internet connection.

 

One is even is a heavy usenet downloader, averaging 80 gigabytes a month.

 

Clearwire branded devices seem to throttle with heavy usage, but Sprint branded devices don't.

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Clearwire branded devices seem to throttle with heavy usage, but Sprint branded devices don't.

 

It's my understanding that the contract Sprint has with Clearwire prohibits Clearwire from throttling Sprint customers. However, Sprint can have their customers throttled. It's just that Clearwire cannot make that determination themselves of a Sprint customer.

 

However, Clearwire can do whatever they want with their own customers. And often does. :P

 

Robert

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It's my understanding that the contract Sprint has with Clearwire prohibits Clearwire from throttling Sprint customers. However, Sprint can have their customers throttled. It's just that Clearwire cannot make that determination themselves of a Sprint customer.

 

However, Clearwire can do whatever they want with their own customers. And often does. :P

 

Robert

 

I just know that Clearwire has severe issues with their "network optimization" platform and that is part of the reason their reputation is so poor in general.

 

I know that many, many users who signed service contracts with Clearwire were expecting a home broadband replacement and were finding themselves throttled to below EVDO speeds after downloading things like multi-gigabyte operating system updates, playing XBOX live, doing the sorts of things you would expect people to do with a conventional home broadband connection.

 

It was advertised in that manner, especially with those cradle point routers etc.

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