Archive for Thursday, October 16, 2003

Wireless Internet service to start

October 16, 2003

A high-speed, wireless Internet service offered by two De Soto men should be available for De Soto residents as early as next week.
Last Thursday, John Gorkos and Ken Rhudy told De Soto Chamber of Commerce members they should be ready to start signing up customers in 10 days to the service they called Wildcat Wireless Internet. The service will allow customers high-speed access to the Internet through the use of a textbook-sized antenna/modem.
"We're real close," Gorgos said. "We're 10 days away from taking subscribers from those living within the line of sight of the two water towers."
Last month, the two men received the De Soto City Council's blessing to place wireless antennas on the city's two water towers in return for providing the city with free service. City staff has been attempting to secure high-speed Internet service to parts of the city currently not served by cable, including Commerce Park and that part of the city south of Kansas Highway 10.
In his comments to the Council, Gorgos said the partners had to work out an a frequency issue concerning the city of Lenexa's Waverly water tower antenna before they could go ahead with the service. That was resolved, and the partners are moving ahead with offering the service they have successfully tested, Gorgos said last week.
The cost of residential "first-tier" service would be $35 a month with senior citizens getting a $5-a-month discount, Gorgos said. Service could be stepped up another three tiers for $10 extra a month per step, he said. Second-tier service would provide the customer with enough band width for streaming audio, the next step would allow the subscriber to do the same thing with video, and the thirdwould provide enough band width to broadcast video from a Web cam on the Internet, he said.
Gorgos said he wasn't worried about signing on too many customers.
"We can serve 80 percent of the homes in De Soto before we add more equipment," he said. "I don't think we're going to get that many homes. If we do, we'll keep adding equipment."
New customers would not be required to make extended commitments of three to six months.
"We're pay as you go," said. "With that, we'll come install the equipment and answer questions. You'll get service with the service."
Wildcat Wireless' phone number is (913) 568-5979.

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