Bringing Broadband to Under-Served Rural Communities in Washington State
Intelsat and partners work to connect notorious “no service” zone
For those in the Pacific Northwest, losing connectivity is expected. Whether you are driving from mountains to valleys or dealing with spotty internet at a remote home, lapses in coverage are common. This lifestyle of spotty or even “no service” living is prevalent in many of the under-served rural communities of eastern Washington state. Nearly one-fourth of the U.S. population living in rural communities and one-third in tribal areas are without high-speed internet.
This digital divide has had a pronounced impact on these remote communities as the Covid-19 pandemic shifted many workers and students to remote work and learning environments.
Intelsat is partnering with industry leaders to close that divide.
Intelsat, along with coreNOC, KelTech IoT, WaveTech, Hoss and Associates and Peak Industries, recently participated in a live demonstration showcasing a quick-deploy connectivity solution that redefines speed and efficiency for off-the-grid broadband. Intelsat provided satellite and terrestrial infrastructure to connect the demonstration site back to central network facilities and the Internet. Intelsat’s global network is already used by mobile network operators for cellular backhaul in countries around the world, including as part of fully managed solutions in Europe, DRC, the United States, and Japan. Click to Watch Video.
“Intelsat is proud to partner with coreNOC to bring a true turnkey broadband solution to un-served and underserved tribal and rural communities,” said Jeff Horton, managing sales director for networks at Intelsat. “Intelsat-based backhaul is a vital component of the coreNOC solution enabling nearly ubiquitous connectivity in North America. As state and federal governments continue to invest funds to expand broadband reach, the coreNOC partnership allows for Intelsat services to be included in all new opportunities.”
The demonstration took place at the Lincoln County Fairgrounds in Davenport, Washington, a location selected because of its well-known “no service” blackout zones. Attendees, including U.S. Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rogers (R-WA), wireless carriers, tribal leaders and the media, witnessed the turnkey broadband deployment in real time. Intelsat and its partners successfully connected the area to the network by utilizing a self-contained solution with sustainable, off-grid hybrid power, digital electricity, crystal control battery performance and 4G LTE Fixed Broadband. Click for Photos.
Representative McMorris Rogers, who also serves as the Energy and Commerce Republican Leader, said, “Millions of Americans across the country lack access to reliable broadband. This plight has been especially devastating for countless families during the pandemic. Many children have lost an entire school year and counting with no access to remote learning tools. For some parents, unreliable connections at home meant forgoing work to spend hours driving around looking for internet they and their children could connect to.”
By highlighting the ease and speed of its connectivity solution in a rural setting, Intelsat continues to bring simpler, more powerful broadband connectivity to communities worldwide through its globally integrated software-defined satellite network.
To learn more about Intelsat’s enabling solutions with its 5G software-defined network of the future, click here.