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Stelera Wireless brings broadband connectivity to small-town America

“It’s been a great relationship. What we found with Nokia Siemens Networks I-HSPA solution was an opportunity to deploy a network that was extremely competitive, very cost-effective and very reliable. It flattened the network architecture and eliminated the latency issue. What that means to us as a service provider is we now have the ability to go layer on VoIP solutions and other traditional ISP services on the network."

Ed Evans, CEO & President,
Stelera Wireless

With the proliferation of broadband in the United States, it’s hard to imagine that there are still many underserved rural pockets throughout one of the world’s most advanced telecommunications markets.

 

Challenges

  • As a new Internet Service Provider, Stelera was launching a new business model and targeting a new market for its services. The company needed a technology partner who could deploy quickly, was very cost-effective and reliable to support their business strategy and help them succeed.

Broadband access is now considered basic economic infrastructure

Businesses require fast network access to effectively conduct their operations and interact with their customers. Consumers want the ability to have internet access for entertainment, online shopping and education. Local governments need to attract and retain new businesses and residents to grow and strengthen their communities.

Now, thanks to providers like Stelera Wireless, high-speed broadband services and the latest and most robust technology will be accessible to six million people in more than 40 rural communities throughout the U.S.

Stelera’s business model is bringing greater economic vitality to small towns, and it is paying off dividends. Within just one year, nearly 15 percent of their potential customer base has already become Stelera subscribers.

Solution

  • Nokia Siemens Networks understood Stelera’s market strategy and delivered the network architecture needed to rapidly deploy a pure play wireless ISP

  • Nokia Siemens Networks is supplying its industry-leading, flat all-IP Internet High Speed Packet Access (I-HSPA) architecture solution, which includes the company’s flagship Flexi Base Station optimized for the Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) spectrum band

  • The end-to-end offering consists of network and service core, and wireless broadband access, in addition to turnkey services such as network planning, installation, integration, optimization and maintenance

 

New spectrum and innovative technology create a new business model

Stelera Wireless was founded with the successful purchase of 1700/2100MHz Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) licenses from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) auction in 2007.

As a new internet service provider, Stelera created its own market with a new business model, which offers broadband services to rural markets that do not have access to DSL.

Headquartered in Oklahoma City, Stelera was among the first carriers to commercially launch a network in the AWS spectrum bands.

With the help of Nokia Siemens Networks’ innovative solutions and engineering expertise, Stelera deployed its first two high-speed wireless broadband access networks. Stelera offers internet services to several south Texas towns including Floresville, Texas, located 20 miles outside of San Antonio.

Nokia Siemens Networks is supplying its industry-leading flat, all-IP Internet High Speed Packet Access (I-HSPA) architecture solution, which includes the company’s flagship Flexi Base Station, optimized for the AWS spectrum band.

The end-to-end offering consists of wireless broadband access, backhaul, and network and service core. In addition, turnkey services were supplied including network planning, installation, integration, optimization and maintenance.

Benefits

  • Stelera is bringing economic vitality to small town America, offering community residents, businesses and government improved services and greatly enhanced productivity

  • Stelera has captured nearly 15% of the business within the rural markets they serve within just one year

  • The network provides high-speed broadband services with low latency and exceptional network quality, resulting in Stelera attaining high consumer satisfaction and retention

  • Cost-effective networks offer the benefits of wireless mobility and the flexibility to grow with software migration to LTE

  • Stelera’s track record of success and current AWS licenses provide the potential for the company to grow to serve 6 million people in more than 40 rural communities throughout the U.S. with high-speed broadband

 

A reduced latency network

All services benefit from low latency. Latency is more important than the actual peak data rates for many IP-based applications. In applications such as VoIP, video conferencing and online games, low latency is a very important quality factor that greatly improves the end-user experience and reduces churn.

Nokia Siemens Networks I-HSPA flattens the network and with fewer network elements, further reduces latency.

Nokia Siemens Networks understood our needs

Understanding the customer’s needs was a key reason that Stelera chose Nokia Siemens Networks. “Nokia Siemens Networks understood our go-to-market strategy,” says Ed Evans, CEO & President of Stelera Wireless.

“We weren’t yet another wireless telephone company who was going to do a little bit of broadband – we wanted to deploy a pure play broadband network and look every bit like an ISP as anyone else in the country.

As a startup, Stelera was additionally looking for network solutions and engineering talent to design and deploy their new networks.

“Nokia Siemens Networks did a great job of getting the right group of people and resources needed to layout the network architecture to deploy a pure play wireless ISP,” adds Evans.

“And it has been very effective!”