Can You Turn A Bunch Of Dialup Users Into Wireless Broadband Users?

from the the-leapfrog-rollup dept

Dialup is dead, right? So why is one company trying to rollup a bunch of dialup providers? Well, the logic appears to be taking the rollup one step further, recognizing that many people using dialup are only doing so because there aren’t many alternatives. So, the plan is to rollup and then play leapfrog over wired broadband providers. The company, founded by a founder of MTV, is trying to buy a bunch of small dialup ISPs in “tier 3” cities, and then will build a wireless broadband offering to provide those users a migration path. That seems like a pretty big bet to make. First off, it’s not clear that the reason these folks are on dialup is just because they don’t have the other options. What if they don’t want broadband (or, worse, don’t want to pay for broadband)? Also, building a broadband wireless network still isn’t that cheap, and there’s no real indication what technology (or spectrum) this company plans to use. Finally, building a nationwide brand takes money as well. So, basically, this company seems like a poor man’s attempt to be Clearwire (wireless broadband, lower tiered markets), but without money, spectrum, or Craig McCaw’s ability to build buzz. And, of course, plenty of folks are pretty skeptical about Clearwire’s chances in the first place. The only thing this new company seems to have is a bunch of dialup subscribers they had to buy, who might not want to jump to a (still non-existent) broadband wireless offering.

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Comments on “Can You Turn A Bunch Of Dialup Users Into Wireless Broadband Users?”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: fourthly,

…and I suppose you think dial-up is secure?

What the hell kind of encryption do you use on your phone line? NONE!

Oh, so it must magically get secure once it hits the ISP remote access server (you can actually monitor ports from other dial-up ports if you know what you’re doing)… or may it get secure when it hits the switch and goes on to that special “secure” VLAN (mac address flooding, span port monitoring, VLAN bending all jump to mind). Well, that only leaves the e-mail server and the web proxy and we all know how insecure those are.

anonymoust troll says:

Actually, they're on to something...

Here’s the deal,

Pre-acqusition talks can usually shake loose a certain amount of data for due diligence purposes. Say, like the radius authentication log with caller ID turned on.

You only need to cross reference that data between two other data sources to know if you have a winner.

Source one is the geo-location of the caller id recorded phone number. Most phone compaies can provide this, but there are several mapping companies that can provide the exact same information

Source two, speciality shops that do topographic propagation analysis for the radio business. Folks that do this stuff have been around since the 70s and most of these shops have pre-existing databases of antenna sites as well.

If you use commodity gear, the customers can upgrade themselves.

It’s like shooting fish in a barrel really.

Brian says:

Re: It's about the money...

You’re not taking into account the fact the some companies like AOL are still charging $24-$30 per month for there dial-up services. That coupled with the reality that some people have a 2nd phone line for there internet, makes the price of Broadband not as far fetched as you would think. Especially when a company like Clearwire offers you high-speed wireless at a price point of $35 after there intro rate.

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