Business Side of the Triple Play in SW Minnesota

Thanks to John Shepard for sending me an interesting article from the Cottonwood County Citizen (Windom Telecom Gets Cash Infusion, Feb 8, 2012). It’s not available online, but if you are in a community that’s starting to think about broadband it might be worth tracking down. It outlines the logistics behind providing triple play (data, voice, TV) around Windom Minnesota. SMBS (Southwest Minnesota Broadband System) has been connecting customers to fiber. Once on fiber customers have access to triple play services through SMBS’ partnership with Windomnet.

SMBS offers television through a partnership with Windomnet based on per customer charge…

Windomnet oversees the cable TV system, handles service and repair of equipment, updates channels and pays for programming. When residents pay their cable TC fees, Windomnet essentially received $5 per customer to help cover costs.

The phone and Internet services are purchased differently…

On a monthly basis, SMBS pays Windomnet for Internet based on the total amount of bandwidth used. Essentially, Windom is paid so much per megabit.

“For telephone, we bill based on number of minutes used, ” [Windom City Administrator Steve] Nasby said, “Everything runs through our switch and we bill the broadband group.”

It sounds as if things are running smoothly both from the perspective of SMBS and Windomnet. SBMS expects to begin connecting more folks very soon – hoping for a pace of about 250 customers a month through 2012. Windomnet may be hiring new staff or at least bumping up a part time employee to full time. So although this is a very high level look, this seems to be a successful recipe.

This entry was posted in Building Broadband Tools, Community Networks, MN, Rural, Vendors by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

I have a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science. I have been interested or involved in providing access to information through the Internet since 1994, when I worked for Minnesota’s first Internet service provider. I am pleased to be a part of the Blandin on Broadband Team. I also work with MN Coalition on Government Information, Minnesota Rural Partners, and the American Society for Information Science and Technology.

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