Category: News

HBC High Density Wifi Installed at the Treasure Island Concert Amphitheater

For Immediate Release (07/24/2018)

 

Red Wing, MN –  Hiawatha Broadband Communications has installed new High Density Wifi Technology at Treasure Island Resort and Casino’s outdoor amphitheater.

According to HBC Wireless Broadband Engineer, Joe Glende, HBC utilized an array of multiple “beam streaming” antennas to provide wireless service for concert goers.

“This was a neat project to work on,” Glende said. “We mounted sixteen small antennas to light poles and an existing structure at the venue which allows us to deliver a fiber-like broadband experience within the amphitheater itself. The first event had over 10,000 in attendance and the wireless service worked great.”

Glende said attendees at previous events had reported issues in bringing up electronic tickets on their phones, as local cell phone towers became overloaded. With the new stadium Wifi solution from HBC that problem has now been eliminated.

“At a previous event, we were told thousands of people were delayed entry into the venue because the existing cellular service was not able to provide the bandwidth required to process the ticket data. People are now a lot happier,” according to Glende.

The technology is very new, according to Glende. He said this technology is gaining momentum siting other installations such as the FedEx Forum, home of the NBA’s Memphis Grizzlies.

About HBC: Innovative broadband solutions with unparalleled customer service makes Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Inc. (HBC) the preferred service provider in southeastern Minnesota. Based in Winona, MN, HBC builds advanced Fiber-To-The-Premises networks, offering 1 Gbps speeds, in addition to maintaining an extensive wireless broadband network which brings symmetrical broadband to under/unserved homes, businesses, and schools in rural areas.  HBC provides over 125 local jobs with employees supporting retail, wholesale, construction, business consulting, and technical support in nearly 30 communities.

 

For additional information, please contact David Dicke at ddicke@hbci.com or at (507) 474-5884.

 

Just in Time for the Holiday Weekend, HBC Launches “Community Wi-Fi”

Winona, MN – Hiawatha Broadband Communications (HBC) announced today it has launched Community Wi-Fi within select locations of the HBC service area.

HBC President/General Manager Dan Pecarina says Community Wi-Fi is an extension of HBC’s commitment to the communities HBC serves.

“We are very excited to be able to offer Community Wi-Fi to not only our current Customers, but also to the community as a whole. Access to Internet is essential for everyone today and Community Wi-Fi allows users to check email, download files, stream music and movies, all of those things.”

The service is accessible by any wireless and mobile Internet ready-device by selecting the “HBC_Community_WiFi” network on your smartphone or other devices. The service is free for HBC Customers and available to the general public for a small fee. Current HBC Customers may simply log in using their billing email address and HBC account number. Non HBC Customers can purchase Wi-Fi access online for an hour, a day, or a week at a time.

For now, HBC Community WiFi will be available in Winona’s Lake Park and Levee Park, in Lake City at Camp Lacupolis and the Lake City Marina, and at Whippoorwill Campground in Kellogg.

Learn more about HBC’s Community WiFi service and how to log in here.

HBC Continues to Expand Rural Broadband Coverage with Micro-PoP Wireless Technology

For Immediate Release (02/27/2018)

Winona, MN – Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Inc. (HBC) has implemented new technology that is delivering high-speed broadband to remote areas at a fraction of the cost of wired solutions. A major factor prohibiting the expansion of high-speed broadband to small, rural communities is the cost of delivering true broadband speeds. HBC believes this new offering will speed up its approach to rural areas.

HBC recently partnered with the City of Pepin, Wisconsin to bring HBC AirMax, HBC’s new Micro-PoP wireless broadband service, to local residents and businesses. According to HBC Wireless Broadband Engineer, Joe Glende, AirMax utilizes small antennas which are mounted to city light poles to beam a broadband signal to a small receiving antenna, roughly the size of a cellphone, mounted on the roofs of homes and businesses.

“HBC already serves thousands of rural homes and businesses with a combination of technologies,” said Glende. “including fiber and point-to-multipoint wireless. Our new Micro-PoP service brings the connection closer to the customer which results in faster speeds and excellent reliability.”

HBC President Dan Pecarina said this technology is a game-changer to bringing HBC wireless broadband to areas where population density or terrain makes it too expensive to build a FTTP network.

“At HBC, our mission is to bring quality, high-speed broadband to underserved areas in our region. HBC AirMax is another tool we have when our all-fiber networks are not financially feasible for ourselves or for our customers. We believe a hybrid fiber-wireless network in rural areas can be a cost-effective solution.”

HBC now offers multiple levels of AirMax service starting with 30 Mbps with a current high-end speed of 100 Mbps. Glende also stated that HBC has started AirMax service in two new areas in Minnesota with a third area likely to be activated early this summer.

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About HBC: Innovative broadband solutions with unparalleled customer service makes Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Inc. (HBC) the preferred service provider in southeastern Minnesota. Based in Winona, MN, HBC builds advanced Fiber-To-The-Premises networks, offering 1 Gbps speeds, in addition to maintaining an extensive wireless broadband network which brings symmetrical broadband to under/unserved homes, businesses, and schools in rural areas.  HBC provides over 125 local jobs with employees supporting retail, wholesale, construction, business consulting, and technical support in nearly 30 communities.

HBC and Calix: Working Together to Provide Broadband Solutions

For the past several years, Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Inc. (HBC) and Calix have teamed up to find innovative solutions to deliver the best service to our customers.  Follow the link below to learn how this partnership is providing better broadband service to your home.

https://www.calix.com/blog/2017/december/three-broadband-requirements–two-wi-fi-issues–one-solution-.html

 

 

 

HBC policies

HBC and Net Neutrality

Amidst the national conversation about Net Neutrality, HBC wants to make clear our positions as it relates to Net Neutrality and our customers.

  • HBC has Never Blocked or Throttled consumer access to lawful Internet content.
  • HBC has Never Used consumer data without consent for marketing.
  • HBC has Never Resold consumer data to third parties.
  • HBC has Never Engaged in unlawful or anti-competitive discrimination against websites, streaming video services, and voice applications that may compete with traditional services HBC offers.
  • HBC has Never Offered Pay-for-Priority services.
  • HBC INVESTS in the networks we use to give our consumers the Internet speed, capacity and services they desire most.

HBC has no intention to change any part of this commitment to its customers now or in the future.

U.S. Ignite names Red Wing Ignite a Smart Gigabit Community

Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Inc. (HBC) congratulates Red Wing Ignite on being selected to participate in the U.S. Ignite Smart Gigabit Communities (SGC) program.  HBC is a proud partner of Red Wing Ignite.

Read more below…

by nmohan   November 29, 2017

November 29, 2017 – Red Wing, Minn. – Today, US Ignite, Inc. announced that Red Wing Ignite, located in southern Minnesota, is the newest participant in the US Ignite Smart Gigabit Communities (SGC) program. US Ignite is a nonprofit that spurs the creation of next-generation applications and services that leverage advanced networking technologies to build the foundation for smart communities. Funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) in 2015, US Ignite’s Smart Gigabit Communities program is creating “living lab” environments for the next generation of gigabit applications. Red Wing Ignite joins 24 other national and international communities participating in the SGC program.

“Building a diverse set of communities has been important to us since the start of the SGC program,” said William Wallace, Executive Director of US Ignite. “We are excited to have Red Wing on board to provide the unique perspective of a rural community. As an original member of US Ignite in 2013, the community has already succeeded in becoming a regional hub for digital innovation and business development. Joining the program is its next step in continuing this path of success.”

“We value the partnership we have built with US Ignite over the past four years, and we are honored to receive this new opportunity for our region,” said Neela Mollgaard, Executive Director of Red Wing Ignite and Community Leader of the SGC program. “The added resources and connections throughout the country will elevate our efforts in Minnesota.”

Smart Gigabit Communities is a collaboration among US Ignite, universities, municipalities, community anchor institutions like hospitals and schools, nonprofits, network carriers and ISPs.  Together, these organizations are focused on developing smart gigabit applications that address local community needs, such as education, workforce development, public safety, community health, smart energy and transportation. Each member of the program has committed to develop two gigabit applications or gigabit services per year that provide advanced technology solutions to issues faced by that community. They also agree to share those applications with other participants in the program.

According to US Ignite, it is essential for rural communities to be connected to other communities so that they don’t fall behind in the rapidly changing digital space. Access to a national network is critical in developing, launching and scaling new applications. The SGC program provides the infrastructure that allows Red Wing Ignite to a be a “tech hub” for greater Minnesota and serve students, entrepreneurs and businesses.

For example, Red Wing Ignite has expressed an interest in creating gigabit agricultural applications, as well as clean energy, healthcare, educational, and advanced manufacturing applications. One potential smart agricultural application uses thermal imagery from infrared cameras to measure temperatures and crop water stress during critical crop growth stages. Advanced networks enable local farmers to receive massive amounts of data from these cameras, analyze that data, and make informed decisions.

Hiawatha Broadband Communications (HBC) is a key technology partner for Red Wing Ignite, providing gigabit Internet speeds over FTTP networks reaching Red Wing Ignite users in nine Minnesota counties. HBC’s fiber optic transport ring connects more than twenty southern Minnesota cities with multiple 10 GB and 100 GB backbones. HBC will dedicate a team responsible for the networking and connectivity to partners in the Red Wing Ignite community, led by HBC president Dan Pecarina.

Many other organizations partner within the Red Wing Ignite community, including:  3M, Xcel Energy, City of Red Wing, Blandin Broadband Foundation, and Winona State University.

 

 

Hiawatha Broadband Communications Chooses Espial Elevate SaaS Cloud Platform to Enhance Consumer Experience

OTTAWA, Canada — Nov. 30, 2017 — Espial announced that Hiawatha Broadband Communications (HBC) is
powering its video services with Espial’s Elevate cloud-based Software as a Service (SaaS)
solution. HBC is a leading operator in Minnesota and Wisconsin providing television, broadband, and
voice services to its customers. By powering its video services with Elevate, HBC can deliver a
premium user experience including Netflix, YouTube, and Alexa Amazon voice control — with
predictable costs and delivery.

“We’re always looking to enhance the user experience and offer next-generation features to our
customers. The Elevate cloud solution sets the benchmark for delivering a rich and immersive video
experience,” said Dan Pecarina, HBC president and CEO. “Elevate strengthens our brand identity and
ensures customers across all devices, including set-top boxes, tablets, and smartphones, can
benefit from state-of-the-art features, delivered at reasonable costs by HBC.”

“The Elevate platform is gaining traction with operators like HBC that want to deliver a next-gen
video experience,” said Matt James, vice president of North America sales at Espial. “As pay-TV
operators look to differentiate themselves in the marketplace, our Elevate Cloud SaaS community
continues to grow, offering an award-winning user experience, proven roadmap, and the capacity to
deliver engaging TV services at web speed and scale.”

About Espial (www.espial.com)

# # #

Espial is transforming viewing experiences worldwide by enabling video services at web speed and
web scale. From immersive user experience and discovery solutions to advanced cloud-based
platforms, Espial solutions help service providers manage, deliver and monetize video and
entertainment services. Espial’s customers span six continents, have deployed tens of million
devices, and are serviced through Espial’s global sales, support, and innovation centers across
North America, Europe, and Asia.

About HBC (www.hbci.com)
Innovative   broadband   solutions   with   unparalleled   customer   service   makes   Hiawatha
Broadband Communications, Inc. (HBC) the preferred service provider in southeastern Minnesota.
Based in Winona, MN,  HBC  builds  advanced  Fiber-To-The-Premises  networks,  offering  1  Gbps
speeds,  in  addition  to maintaining   an   extensive   wireless   broadband   network   which
brings   symmetrical   broadband   to under/unserved homes, businesses, and schools in rural areas.
HBC provides over 125 local jobs with employees  supporting  retail,  wholesale,  construction,
business  consulting,  and  technical  support  in  of nearly 30 communities.

HBC Announces Agreement to be acquired by Schurz Communications

Winona, MN – Hiawatha Broadband Communications Inc., (HBC) announced Friday it has signed an agreement to be acquired by Mishawaka, IN based Schurz Communications.

HBC President and CEO Dan Pecarina said HBC has always been a unique service provider building networks that provide competition, improved service and a commitment to the small towns and rural locations throughout the region. This will not change and we expect it to continue to improve and expand.

“The interaction we have with our Customers will not change,” said Pecarina. “Our Customer Care and Technical Support teams will remain in our local communities. Providing unparalleled Customer Care is something we have always been very proud of, and that will continue.”

Schurz Communications is an information company which owns several cable, newspaper publishing, and digital media entities. Pecarina said the HBC board of directors and management team looked very hard at Schurz to make sure it was the right company to help HBC carry on its mission of bringing world-class broadband to small, rural communities.

“Schurz believes, as we do, that a good company is actively engaged in and cares about the communities they serve. Schurz focusses on employees and customers and believes that local employees making the day to day decisions serve the customer best. We’re pleased to join Schurz as they share our vision of not just what HBC is today but also what we believe HBC can be in the future,” said Pecarina.

Todd Schurz, President and CEO of Schurz Communications, said they plan to continue to invest in the business and its employees.

“We know that our success is at the local level where the day to day business will be run. HBC has been an integral part of southeastern Minnesota for 20 years, and that will not change. On behalf of Schurz we want to welcome HBC to our family of companies and look forward to growing together,” said Schurz.

The purchase is expected to be finalized on December 31, 2017 pending regulatory approvals.

About HBC: Innovative broadband solutions with unparalleled customer service makes Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Inc. (HBC) the preferred service provider in southeastern Minnesota. Based in Winona, MN, HBC builds advanced Fiber-To-The-Premises networks, offering 1 Gbps speeds, in addition to maintaining an extensive wireless broadband network which brings symmetrical broadband to under/unserved homes, businesses, and schools in rural areas.  HBC provides over 125 local jobs with employees supporting retail, wholesale, construction, business consulting, and technical support in of nearly 30 communities.

 About Schurz Communications www.schurz.com Schurz Communications, Inc., is a Mishawaka, IN-based news and information company that consists of cable, newspaper publishing and digital media. The company publishes daily and weekly newspapers in medium and small markets. It also owns cable companies and phone directories. Geographically, Schurz Communications has a presence in Arizona, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Nebraska, Pennsylvania and South Dakota

HBC Services Now Available in Cannon Falls

 

Cannon Falls, MN – Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Inc. (HBC) has announced that residents and businesses can begin signing up for its Internet, Video, and Phone services in Cannon Falls.

HBC officials said approximately 400 homes and businesses located in the area from the fairgrounds to Highway 9 and U.S. Highway 52 to 6th Street can now begin signing up to be connected to the state-of- the-art fiber-optic network and the full range of HBC services. Services are currently available to a select number of homes and businesses with services to be made available to the
entire area by mid-October.

HBC President and CEO, Dan Pecarina, said new customers will have access to the fastest Internet in the region.

“Our Cannon Falls customers are going to have access to our super-fast Internet with speeds of up to one Gigabit. In addition, they can enjoy vivid high-definition Video, and crystal-clear Phone service. We believe customers will be very pleased with the quality of our services and our superior, local, customer service.” he said.

HBC Internet service features speeds up to one Gigabit. HBC Video offers up to 350 channels including nearly 130 HD channels and local programming produced by HBC Studios. Phone service options include Unlimited Local and Long Distance Calling and other home phone options. Customers will be able to keep their current phone number upon switching services.

Anyone interested in HBC services is encouraged to call (888) 474-9995 to speak with a Customer Care Representative.

New Cannon Falls residential customers will be eligible for HBC’s Cornerstone program. Any customer choosing 100 Mbps Internet service will have the option of upgrading to Gigabit speeds with no increase to their monthly bill.

Company officials say a local HBC office in Cannon Falls will be open by the end of October.

 

HBC Services Now Available in New Trier

Winona, MN – Hiawatha Broadband Communications, Inc., (HBC) announces its high-speed broadband services are now available in New Trier.

HBC officials state that residents and businesses can now begin connecting to the state-of-the-art fiber-optic network. HBC President and CEO, Dan Pecarina, said New Trier customers will be able to enjoy the full range of the company’s services.

“We are excited to be able to provide our new customers access to super-fast Internet with speeds up to one Gigabit as well as high-definition Video, and crystal-clear Phone service. The service will truly be something they have not experienced before,” he said.

All three HBC services: Internet, Video, and Phone are available to New Trier residents. Internet service features speeds up to one Gigabit. HBC Video offers up to 350 channels including nearly 130 HD channels and local programming produced by HBC Studios. Phone service options include Unlimited Local and Long Distance Calling and other home phone options. Customers will be able to keep their current phone number upon switching services.

Anyone interested in HBC services is encouraged to call (888) 474-9995 to speak with a Customer Care Representative.

New Trier customers are also eligible for HBC’s Cornerstone program. Any customer choosing 100 Mbps Internet service will have the option of upgrading to Gigabit speeds with no increase to their monthly bill.

Construction of the high-speed HBC broadband network is currently underway in Miesville and Cannon Falls. Services will be available in those communities this fall.