Gigabit in the Cowboy State

Reinvesting in their community is what differentiates independent operators from their competition. Silver Star Communications, which serves northwestern Wyoming and eastern Idaho, exemplifies the difference a local operator can make. It was an honor to spend the day with Silver Star Communications as they launched the first Gigabit communities in Wyoming.

In the above interview, Silver Star Communications’ president and COO, Ron McCue, talks about their new Gigabiz product that includes the communities of Afton, Alpine, Jackson and Thayne. He points out the importance of being able to provide gigabit connectivity to local businesses to ensure the businesses and, by extension, the communities they serve can be competitive.

Joining McCue on stage, via video conference, was Wyoming Governor Matt Mead. Mead shares a desire to create a fourth leg of a relatively robust economy (4.7% unemployment rate in Sept. 2014) that relies primarily on agriculture, tourism and mining. McCue explains how the Wyoming state government is unique in that its structure forces a balanced budget, while, at the same time, having various mechanisms for saving and investing in education and infrastructure.

Three of the communities where they are launching Gigabiz are part of their incumbent service territory. Jackson, a tony, summer and winter outdoor tourist destination, is a competitive exchange for Silver Star Communications and was constructed as part of an ARRA “stimulus” build that was completed ahead of schedule and under budget. Judging from the business people with whom I spoke, there is a pent-up demand for the kind of reliable and high-speed, symmetric bandwidth that only a fiber-to-the-premise network can provide.,

Stay tuned for future interviews looking at the reactions of local leaders to this announcement, as well as discussion of some of the other implications for both the mid-mile and last mile with the deployment of a gigabit network.

This video made possible by Calix, Inc.

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