By Claus Hetting, Wi-Fi NOW CEO & Chairman
Cloudwifi – a startup ISP based in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada – is disrupting telcos by cutting Internet subscription costs in half. The company is using fibre and 60 GHz radios from IgniteNet to reach apartment blocks, condos, and enterprises with gigabit Internet access, and is doubling their subscriber base each year.
Three years ago, Cloudwifi connected their first client with fibre: A university campus building in Waterloo, Ontario. Today, Cloudwifi services more than one hundred buildings across Ontario with gigabit Internet services and the company’s subscriber base has grown by more than 100% every year. Their winning strategy? A combination of fibre and gigabit 60 GHz radios.
Deployment is fast with 60 GHz
“60 GHz radios are so much faster to deploy than fibre. We use them to branch out from our fibre network to connect even more buildings in record time. They also offer gigabit performance and one kilometre of range,” says CTO and Founder of Cloudwifi, Arif Hudda.
According to Hudda, the average price of a 100 Mbps Internet subscription in Canada is around $90 per month. Cloudwifi has not only cut this price in half, but customers are also being provided with symmetrical connections, meaning they receive the same high speed in the both upload and download direction. In Canada the industry average is for upload speeds to be a mere 10% of download speeds.
A growth opportunity: Condos and apartments
The company’s growth has been impressive. “We’re doubling the amount of buildings under service every year, and we’ve launched our expansion into Toronto. We’re also looking at how to expand into the US market,” says Hudda. Most of the growth right now is coming from connecting condominiums and apartment buildings to the Cloudwifi high-speed network.
60 GHz technology from IgniteNet
IgniteNet’s 60 GHz radios use the unlicensed 60 GHz band to deliver gigabit connectivity from point to point and – in a just released product – from point to multipoint. The 60 GHz band is unlicensed and many GHz wide, allowing for multi-gigabit connectivity over a kilometre or more. IgniteNet 60 GHz radios employ WiGig chipset technology from Peraso Technologies.