Windstream has revealed plans to significantly boost its last mile reach to the business market, and they'll be doing it wirelessly. They have signed a strategic partnership with Cambridge Broadband Networks and Straight Path Communications to expand their fixed wireless reach in 40 markets nationwide.
Over the last year or two, Windstream has been investing in fiber network expansions across its markets, bringing fiber closer to their CLEC-style customers as well as their copper-style ILEC footprint. But the company is increasingly seeing the next step on that path to be one that might be best served by the next generation of fixed wireless options. Such technologies seem to be enjoying a renaissance this year to be sure with both AT&T and Google even said to be taking a look at applications in the consumer market.
In this case, Windstream will be deploying CBNL's VectaStar 39GHz radios on Straight Path's 39GHz spectrum. They'll be enhancing seven existing fixed wireless markets (Chicago, New York, Boston, Cleveland, Milwaukee, and Little Rock) and deploying new networks in 33 markets fir the first time, including Atlanta, Baltimore, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Dallas, Detroit, Kansas City, Miami, Minneapolis, Nashville, Oklahoma City, Phoenix, Richmond, San Antonio, Seattle and St. Louis.
The map fanatic inside of me notices that list is heavy with places outside the company's ILEC footprint yet on the fiber they acquired in the PAETEC and KDL acquisitions. With the exception of Phoenix, they are all east of the Rockies, which makes sense in the same context. But there are another 32 optional markets where Straight Path has the same spectrum.