Editor’s note: On the 20th World Wi-Fi Day, the CEO of Chicago-based Cambium Networks talks about the importance of spreading wireless Internet connectivity all around the world, not just in metro areas.

CHICAGO – At Cambium Networks, our core business is connecting people. That’s why we’re so excited about World Wi-Fi Day, a unique worldwide initiative happening on June 20, 2017. Designed to help bridge the digital divide, and organized by Wireless Broadband Alliance under the leadership of the Connected City Advisory Board (CCAB), it is a platform to recognize and celebrate the significant role Wi-Fi is playing in cities and communities around the world by driving exciting and innovative projects to “connect the unconnected.”

World Wi-Fi Day makes us aware of how connectivity touches lives like never before, improving economic growth, social mobility, computer literacy and education. Cambium is proud of our solutions that connect the larger world, and we think staying close to family and friends, no matter where you are, is even more important than the technology itself. All we do is build global connections! And with World Wi-Fi Day in mind, here are just a few:

  • Connecting Families in the Himalayas – Tsering G. Sherpa, CEO of Everest Link, started his Nepal-based company in 2000, at the same time his mother was diagnosed with cancer. Due to steep terrain and inaccessibility, Nepal’s only forms of communication were written letters, and transport was limited to walking or riding somewhere via helicopter. So, when Sherpa’s mother needed to visit a hospital in India, the lack of local communications infrastructure forced the family to relocate. This situation inspired Sherpa to build out a communications infrastructure, starting with 128 kbps of bandwidth for connecting villages. Today, Everest Link uses Cambium equipment to connect over 200 hotspots in more than 40 villages, serving some 34,000 locals and more than 40,000 tourists annually. They also connect more than 1,600 climbers in the Himalayas at any given time – providing vital services in the toughest terrain in the world – on Mount Everest Base Camp. According to Sherpa, Everest Link is now a community company. “We’ve made each and every hotel in our area, and every business entity, a stakeholder by providing connectivity needed for the tourist industry. We’ve also begun a distance-learning program in certain schools, because few teachers are available to go to remote Himalayan schools. This is another problem we’ve been able to solve with high-speed connectivity.”
  • Connectivity Keeps the Australian Outback in Touch – The Wingellina, or Irrunytju, Community is a small Indigenous community located in a very remote part of Western Australia. Through NG Media, an indigenous-owned organization empowering remote communities through the use of multimedia, reseller Easyweb equipped them with a Cambium-powered Internet access solution. Daniel Sacchero, Business Manager for Easyweb said, “Thanks to the solution we built with NG and Cambium, people can now enjoy community access to the Internet and NG’s digital programs, all from a single location. Providing this kind of equal access to information and education can help improve remote communities and ensure they aren’t left behind.”
  • Connecting Truckers and Travelers to Their Families – Highway US-40 runs east to west across Tennessee, connecting Memphis, Nashville, and Knoxville. An intersection with US-13, about 90 minutes west of Nashville, provides a popular location for drivers to refuel and rest – and of course, use the Internet. But that wasn’t always the case, with local businesses only having connectivity via leased T1 lines or satellite service. Paul Vaughn of Tennessee Wireless took action, implementing a Cambium-powered network to drive commerce – and connect people – at what he describes as the “busiest truck stop I’ve ever seen.” Each day, the network supports thousands of people stopping for fuel, a meal, or an overnight stay, by providing reliable and secure connectivity. Businesses use the network for credit card processing, streaming video surveillance, and hotel guest voice and data access – at a lower cost – while truckers and families stay in touch with loved ones.

Whether connecting mountain climbers in the Himalayas, villages in remote Australia, or providing high-speed service to an important stretch of rural American interstate, Cambium is there. Our technology “connects the unconnected,” and we do it like no other company. That’s why we’re so excited about World Wi-Fi Day’s recognition of the role that networks play in the economic and social development of our world. And although our products and services are of a technical nature, we believe that communications is all about connecting people.

(C) Cambium Networks