We are thrilled to announce the closure of the Airwaive Project’s seed round, totaling $3M from a terrific group of blockchain VCs. The Airwaive Project is a foundation, created on the blockchain, with a mission to close the gap in the digital divide by bringing affordable, wireless Internet to homes around the world. At Airwaive, our marketplace and applications power any type of wireless network in any location. Yet, we recognize that the world’s greatest need is equal access to the Internet – at broadband speeds. That’s why we formed the Airwaive Project and a unique platform to create decentralized, wireless broadband networks where they are needed.
Decentralized Wireless Broadband Networks
What is a decentralized wireless network? Let’s first answer this question by explaining the typical, centralized wireless network model for mobile phones. Traditionally, mobile networks were carefully planned and built out to have contiguous service, because mobile phones are… mobile. You move from one city to the next city and expect to have seamless coverage. These networks are planned by engineers and then site locations are selected and contracted to host wireless access points for mobile phones. That’s centralized.
Wireless broadband to a home or business is different. It’s not mobile. It’s called fixed wireless, because a wireless modem is installed in your home to provide broadband Internet service. If you’re in range of the wireless signal, you get Internet. You don’t have to worry about a wireless signal in the next city, or even down the street. Wireless broadband networks do not need to be contiguous.
There are three key things to build a local, wireless broadband network. First, wireless access point equipment. Second, the property where the equipment is installed. Third, the high-speed Internet backhaul that carries the traffic to the core Internet, such as a fiber optic line. For example, from a 10 Gbps fiber endpoint, 100 homes in the surrounding area can be powered with 100 Mbps wireless Internet service. These cellular hotspots can pop up anywhere, with these three ingredients, forming a decentralized network.
Join the Mission
Although the project’s seed round is now closed to investors, there are several ways to participate and help the project. We’re looking for:
- Wireless operators – Internet service providers that are building regional or national networks to deliver wireless broadband to homes and businesses. The operator is responsible for the customer and service but may choose to partner with hosts that help purchase equipment and build local networks.
- Property owners – Hosts, as we call them, with rights to place wireless access point equipment on a property. The host is ideally located near a fiber optic network for high-speed data, as these fiber endpoints are necessary to carry the data traffic. Hosts that purchase and maintain equipment receive greater rewards for their efforts.
- Fiber partnerships – Wireless broadband access points need high-speed fiber for backhaul. We’re looking for fiber partnerships with creative solutions to grow as the network grows.
- Installation partnerships – We’re looking for partners with wireless equipment installation experience to help grow and scale new networks.
- Smart people – We’re hiring. Check our job board for potential opportunities.
Airwaive is currently available in the United States, but we’re expanding internationally and welcome potential partners around the world.