A bullseye every time is not only possible but easy. For years, wireless service providers contended with the elements to establish outdoor connections to customer locations. Clear line of sight from the source to the destination gives the best radio performance in the sub-6 GHz frequency band. Antenna placement and alignment required a skilled technician to plan the link. Installation often involved trial and error to optimize signal strength.
Not anymore. Cambium engineers working closely with service providers developed cnHeat. cnHeat is a radio frequency (RF) planning service that generates highly accurate RF predictions using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data. Because optimal locations are specifically identified with one-meter precision, installers rapidly place equipment in the exact optimal location the first time.
When the COVID-19 pandemic forced many people to work from home, Hiawatha Broadband Communications, a service provider covering southern Minnesota and Western Wisconsin, saw demand for residential service triple. It was no longer feasible to go to each location, do a site survey and then return to do the installation. HBC aimed to decrease overall cost for successful installations, eliminate failed installations and selectively target market customers that were already within their service area.
The cnHeat planning service streamlined the process and improved the business in three ways:
- Rapidly identify locations where service is not possible – By quickly identifying locations that are unable to be connected, HBC demonstrates their professionalism to the community.
- Keep up with customer demand – 96 HBC sites are equipped with cnHeat, allowing HBC to broaden their customer base.
- Identify new locations to expand coverage where service is possible – HBC was able to uncover opportunities and connect 100 new customers in a town adjacent to their coverage area.
Joseph Glende, an engineer at HBC says, “Using cnHeat allows us to avoid spending time on failed installs. Now, we are able to focus on installations that we know will work and prioritize installation time.” Check out the full story in this case study.
The COVID-19 pandemic has driven each of us to do many things differently. With cnHeat, HBC accepted the challenge of a threefold increase in demand for residential services and found a way to do them better.