What Makes Open Wireless Internet Awesome

Before starting Open Wireless, we took a close look at existing Internet options in rural Groveland. We found that most residents were stuck with flakey satellite, slow DSL, or low-quality wireless. The common theme with all these options was slow speeds, ridiculous data caps, and terrible lag. So we did something awesome: we fixed all three problems.

Low Latency

Latency, commonly known as “lag”, is very minimal on Open Wireless’ network and is comparable to wired alternatives. Low latency internet is capable of supporting stable video calling, streaming, gaming, and more. What most people don’t know is that high latency is worse than slow speeds — it’s like talking to someone on the phone but they don’t hear your response until 5-10 seconds after you say it. With Open Wireless, latency stays low and we even use dedicated appliances to help efficiently manage Internet traffic for an uninterrupted experience.

Fast Speeds

With Open Wireless, you can get up to 100 Mbps. 100 Mbps is more than anyone will likely need. Even if you were streaming 4K video content, you would only be using a maximum of 25 Mbps. This means you could theoretically support four concurrent 4K video streams on a 100 Mbps plan. Because this is highly unlikely for most users, you could get our 50 Mbps or 100 Mbps and never skip a beat. If you’re not a heavy internet user or don’t have that many users on your network, our 15 Mbps plan might be a great fit. Don’t worry, if you want to upgrade or downgrade plans, you can do so at any time by calling us.

No Data Caps

We believe that the Internet should be experienced in an unlimited way. This means no data caps, data overages, or data usage fees that cell carriers and satellite providers often use. Use the Internet to your heart’s content and never worry about your data usage. Pretty cool, right?

Wi-Fi Security

We include a layer of security into your home network by leveraging Plume® HomePass™. HomePass gives you plenty of security features to help keep your home network secure. Here’s an overview:

  • With Plume’s Guard™, you can protect your network against crypto-mining, ransomware, malware, and more. You also get advanced IoT protection and adblocking.
  • Plume also offers a unique feature we haven’t seen before in other residential routers: Access. Access lets you use a single Wi-Fi network but multiple Wi-Fi passwords for different guests and devices. This means you can create a family password, a guest password, and a password for untrusted devices. This is an important feature because Plume can separate these users onto segregated networks to protect your home devices from unauthorized access. To learn more about Plume’s network setup, please see our Plume Advanced Overview.
  • Another feature in Guard that we wanted to mention separately is parental control and content access. Inside HomePass, you can create profiles for users and assign devices to those profiles. This gives you the ability to schedule internet freezes and filter content, like blocking adult sites. We will go over how to configure these controls in our blog post Parental Controls in HomePass.

Have more questions about Open Wireless or Plume? Give us a call today!

User Learning

How Open Wireless Internet Works

Modern internet connectivity is usually delivered via cables that run above ground with power lines or buried below ground. These cables could be using any of the following technologies:

  • Dial-Up: 56 Kbps
  • DSL: 8-10 Mbps average
  • Cable: 100-300 Mbps average
  • Fiber: 250-1000 Mbps average

The problem is, these wired offerings are not available in all areas, especially rural ones. This leaves you with only two options: satellite or cellular.

Although satellite internet offers the most flexibility in terms of connectivity, it has a few critical flaws:

  • Reduction in speed or total loss of connectivity during storms
  • Random downtime and outages
  • Monthly data limits or throttling threshold

For users who need stable, reliable internet, satellite internet is not a viable option. 

Cellular internet via 4G/LTE is another option. Cellular is far more flexible and isn’t affected by rain, but you still run into data limits and/or throttling after a certain threshold of data used each month. 

Open Wireless: The Best of Both Worlds

We took the best of satellite and cellular and combined the two. The result: the best fixed-wireless Internet in Central Florida.

Open Wireless uses pre-existing cell towers in areas that have no reliable broadband Internet access. We use a mix of licensed and unlicensed frequencies to deliver high-speed, low latency Internet connectivity to customers wirelessly. Each customer receives a radio transceiver (CPE) which mounts on the outside of the home and creates a direct connection with the nearest tower. This method has a huge advantage over normal cellular hotspots due to the specialized hardware and radio frequencies we use. Even better: you can use your Internet plan as much as you want and never have to worry about data caps or throttling on data usage.

To ensure that all our customers have a great experience, we pair this offering with Plume Wi-Fi SuperPods – a next-generation mesh Wi-Fi system for the home. Learn more about Plume here.

What Does the Future Hold for Open Wireless?

It’s no secret that technology is forever evolving. That’s exactly why we refuse to settle. Wireless and wired technologies are actively being improved and supported by government funding to expand broadband access.

We at Open Wireless have already begun planning for the next wave of wireless technology and how we can make those offerings available to our new and existing customers. Our goal is to push the envelope on what’s possible with Internet connectivity.

Over the next year, we plan on introducing some of these new technologies to offer even faster Internet plans for our customers.

User Learning

Plume and How it Works

Slow speeds, poor Wi-Fi connectivity, and lackluster customer support are all among the top five most frequent customer complaints about most Internet Service Providers. We decided to solve three problems with one solution: Plume.

Plume is powering the next generation of Wi-Fi by offering high-performance mesh Wi-Fi SuperPods, a customer-friendly mobile app, and a backend support platform to better assist our customers with technical issues.

To better illustrate how awesome Plume is, check out this video below:

Plume Wi-Fi works by leveraging their SuperPods, which wirelessly (or wired) mesh together to create a wide-reaching home network to minimize dead zones. This makes it easy to spread Wi-Fi coverage throughout the home without the huge cost of running ethernet for a hardwired system.

Your Wi-Fi network is managed by the HomePass app, which is included in your Open Wireless Internet plan. It’s available on iOS and Android for free. You’ll be able to use your account to manage network settings, setup guest networks, implement parental controls, enable online protection settings, and more. 

Wi-Fi just got a whole lot easier…

User Learning

Bits vs Bytes

You’ve probably heard of them before: kilobytes, megabytes, and gigabytes. But what is a “byte” exactly? 

The most basic unit of information in computing is called a “bit,” which is a binary digit storing either a zero or a one. Those bits then make up a “byte,” which is a group of eight bits. This can be more easily understood with the picture below.

What's the difference between Mb and MB?

Now that you know what bits and bytes are, it should make sense why Megabit and Megabytes are not the same. If you had a file that was 1 Megabyte (MB) large, that file is not equivalent to a file that is 1 Megabit (Mb) large. Because a byte stores eight bits, a 1 Megabit (MB) file would equal 8 Megabits (Mb).

  • 1 Byte = 8 Bits
  • 1 MB = 8 Mb

It’s common that file sizes are expressed in Megabytes while internet and network speed is measured in Megabits or Gigabits.

To make it even more confusing for you, some devices and apps will measure your internet download speed in Megabytes Per Second (MBps) instead of the standard Megabits Per Second (Mbps) used by Internet Service Providers.

For example, let’s say you’re downloading a new Xbox game and it’s displaying your download speed as 12.5 MB/s. But wait… You’re paying for 100 Megabit Per Second, so WHAT THE HECK! Remember the difference between MB and Mb. 100 Mbps is equal to 12.5 MBps. In this case, you are getting the full download speed that you’re paying for.

I'm STILL not getting the full speed! Why?

If you’re on a 100 Mbps plan, and you’re not getting the full speed in Mbps or the MBps equivalent, there are a few other common factors that would explain this:

  • The website, game, or server you’re downloading from is limited to a certain bandwidth. This is due to the way the developer configured it, or because that service is currently supporting more users than normal. For example, if the site, game, or server is limited to 10 Mbps data transfer to users, no matter what internet speed you have, you will not be able to speed up your connection to that site.
  • If you have other active users or devices on your network, this would decrease your available download capacity, as all users within your home network are sharing the same bandwidth. 
  • The specific device you’re using may only support older Wi-Fi protocols, therefore only supporting lower speeds. Ideally, you should be using devices that are 802.11ac or 802.11ax capable to achieve the best possible Wi-Fi experience.

If you’re still experiencing speed-related issues with your device, try relocating to an area of your home with a better signal to the router or Plume SuperPod and run a speed test.

If you’re still not seeing your expected speeds, give us a call and we’d be happy to assist you.