Community leaders in Peabody believe they have found a reliable and fast Internet source for residents in town, as well as rural residents living up to eight to 10 miles in the surrounding countryside.
In support of the economic development efforts of the community of Peabody, Pixius Com?munications, LLC announced last week the availability of its eXtendsm fixed wireless broadband Internet service.
The service will offer a reliable option to the communities of Peabody and Aulne and provide new coverage in rural Marion County, according to Peabody officials.
?We are absolutely ecstatic to have Pixius coming to our community,? said Shane Marler, executive director of the Peabody Economic Development Council. ?We spent more than 16 months looking at different companies to fill our void.?
Marler said Peabody has had Internet access to this point, but some business owners were complaining about its reliability.
?Our grocery store, for example, has had an uptick in credit and debit card use,? Marler said, ?But if the Internet is down for three days, then it?s hard for them to have those transactions. It?s just not good for business.?
During the search, Pixius outperformed the competition ?in every area we looked at,? Marler said. ?We focused our analysis on companies that provide a reliable solution and good customer service. We are confident Pixius is the right solution for our community.?
Marler said the company is interested in using Peabody as a test market for ?the newest and latest Motorola technology.?
Marler said an early test of the system indicates transfer speeds of up to 46 megabytes per second, which he characterized as ?super fast.?
?Basically, the technology is installed, and they are pre-signing up customers,? Marler said. ?These customers will be installed and online in the order that they signed up.?
The system is based on line of sight. Pixius will be transmitting its Internet signal to customers from atop the local grain elevator.
?If you can see our co-op, you can get service, theoretically,? Marler said. ?There are always factors that go into that? such as trees and issues like that.?
Marler said he is pleased with the range of service offered through Pixius.
?It will be great for rural residents,? he said. ?That was one of the factors that went into the decision?that this would not only take care of our local customers but also our rural friends out in the country.?
Marler said he anticipates a formal launch of the service toward the end of this month.
Jay Maxwell, Pixius chief executive officer, said the Peabody service area coordinates with the company?s recently announced service in Elbing and the upgraded service in Walton.
?Increasing broadband availability has been shown to increase employment and educational opportunities along with improving access to health-care resources.?
Pixius? wireless broadband was launched in Wichita in late 2002 and now provides service to more than 6,200 customers in Kansas and Missouri. The service is delivered via a network of more than 57 communications towers.
It works with all types of Internet products and tools and requires no special software, according to company officials.
Pixius-trained technicians can typically install the system within a week of order placement, the company stated.