Why we manually check coverage

Every property is different, each can present unique challenges when it comes to getting a Lightwire service installed. When you enter your address in our sign up tool, we use computer smarts to check the following automatically:

If all of those looks good, we will accept the order application and have one of our team dive a ittle deeper. At this stage, we will manually check that:

We name this second stage process the “desktop analysis” or “manual validation.”

The magic behind the process

Our Geospatial Analyst has developed an internal map that shows the location of our towers and the landscape surrounding your property which enables us to see what coverage is available to you.

 

The sales agent will pinpoint your property on our map, see which towers could potentially provide coverage, how far away these towers are, and the number of customers already on the tower.

 

We limit the number of users per sector so that we can provide a quality internet experience to every user. Sectors are radios on a tower, each pointing in a specific direction. We essentially keep adding sectors to towers to cater for demand. Spreading load across different towers and sectors is one of the key mechanisms to guarantee minimum download speeds. Read more about our guaranteed minimum download speeds here.

Above is a screenshot of a zoomed-out location (for privacy purposes) that could potentially be in coverage. The rural sales team will check every tower to find out if the towers are in line of sight of the property. 

Minden is the closest tower, so let’s look at the terrain profile from Tahuna to the property to find out if this tower could provide fast rural broadband to the household. 

The terrain profile shows all elevation data between the tower and property. In the above graph, you can see it’s a mountainous area with hills potentially obstructing a clear line of sight.

 

If a hill is cutting it very close to obstructing the line of sight, the rural sales team will check for trees and structures that could obstruct the path between the tower and the property. 

 

When the rural sales team is confident that we can serve the property, they’ll process the request and get the installation process started. Please note that a successful desktop analysis doesn’t guarantee a successful install.

Not in line of sight, we might have a solution for that

Another reason why we have someone from the rural sales team check your address is to see if there are any alternatives to get you connected. When your house is within range of one of our towers – but doesn’t have a direct line of sight to it, a Coverage Extension is our go-to solution.

Coverage Extension (WAN)

Using this solution, we relay a service from a neighbouring property that can access Lightwire’s network, essentially extending our network to you via this other property.

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