Airband Connect upgrades their world-class wireless network to connect more South Africans

Airband Connect upgrades their world-class wireless network to connect more South Africans

Airband Connect, a Herotel company with more than 13 years’ experience in the Wireless internet service provider (WISP) industry turned to MiRO Distribution when they started experiencing network issues. Airband Connect had reported several issues such as; poor capacity, high interference and “radios popping like popcorn” due to heavy lightning strikes in the KZN area. Based on this MiRO suggested Cambium, a highly regarded partner in the wireless connectivity space, as a long-term solution to Airband Connect’s problem.

Airband Connect started replacing their existing equipment with Cambium solutions. Within a period of three years, their entire network was a complete end-to-end Cambium solution. As a result of Cambium’s GPS sync, frequency reuse, smart beamforming functions and dynamic filtering, capacity issues were resolved due to mitigating noise. Their network capacity increased from about 30 customers per 90° base station to 60-80 customers per base station, more than doubling the return on investment. As for the lighting issues in the KZN area, the already built in surge that comes standard with ePMP equipment saved Airband Connect a lot of money. Since using Cambium, they have not lost one radio to lightning.

Due to Cambiums advanced capabilities, Airband Connect was able to achieve greater capacity and better use of spectrum in the 5GHz license exempt band. The Cambium solution also offered ease of management with the use of cnMaestro, Cambium’s next-generation network manager and Wi-Fi controller, providing secure end-to-end network and wireless management. This advanced technology enables Airband Connect to remotely view their entire network from one single pane of glass and simplifies the administration of their devices. Being able to remotely troubleshoot, resulted in cost saving as there were fewer truck rolls, i.e. less deployment of technical staff, vehicles and fuel. However, in cases where Airband Connect did require technical support, Cambium offered excellent support with their 24/7 live chat, telephonic and ticketing support.

When we asked Richard Macalonke, Operations Manager at Airband Connect, what future advice he would give for similar projects, he suggested, LinkPlanner, Cambium’s free link planning tool. This tool allows users to create virtual “what if” scenarios before building a network. Richard added that it is crucial to choose the right partner for the project.  “MiRO gives us excellent service and excellent support, like RMA, technical support and training. We received great support and collaboration all around, from both MiRO and Cambium’s side” Richard explained.


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For more information about the companies, visit the Airband Connect and Cambium Networks websites.

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