Fixed wireless access (FWA) provider Tarana Wireless landed a deal with US cable operator Mediacom Communications to provision high-speed internet to thousands of unserved households as part of a Federal Communications Commission rural coverage initiative.

A Mediacom representative told Mobile World Live the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) award covers around 6,000 locations in the states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia and North Carolina.  

Tarana Wireless claims its base node radios can provide gigabit data rates to around 1,000 customers located within a few miles, with the option provide symmetric up and downlink rates.

The company claims its next-generation FWA platform overcomes technology challenges including radio interference cancellation and provides reliable connectivity despite physical obstructions.

In testing, Tarana Wireless stated its service exceeded the 100Mb/s downlink and 20Mb/s uplink performance standard required by the RDOF programme. 

Fuad Alnajjar, Mediacom VP of business engineering and wireless, stated Tarana Wireless’ FWA platform enables a “significantly faster time-to-market” and would “allow us to expand into previously unreachable markets”.

The Mediacom representative told MWL Tarana Wireless’ towers will be backhauled by fibre, some of which will be deployed by the cable operator and some leased.

They added Mediacom’s initial FWA service used Ericsson equipment, which it will continue to use in many of its existing markets, but opted for Tarana Wireless’ for RDOF markets because testing showed it offered “the best coverage and speeds for the types of landscape and terrain we have to cover in these areas”.