Sunday, January 9, 2011

Thumb Cellular Joins Verizon Wireless' Rural LTE Program

Michigan-based Thumb Cellular has joined Verizon Wireless' LTE in Rural America program. Under this program, Thumb will deploy and operate a state of the art 4G LTE wireless network which will provide greater telecommunications capabilities and choices for the residents of Michigan's Thumb area.

Under the agreement, Verizon Wireless will lease to Thumb its 700 MHz upper C block wireless spectrum in the Thumb Cellular service areas where Verizon Wireless has not constructed a network. Using the leased spectrum, Thumb will construct and operate a 4G LTE network in three counties in Michigan serving Thumb customers, Verizon Wireless customers and customers of other LTE in Rural America participants. In addition, Thumb customers will have access to Verizon Wireless' 4G LTE network throughout the United States.

Agri-Valley Communications which has a long and rich history of meeting the telecommunications needs of the rural communities it serves. Agri-Valley Communications is a locally- and family-owned business which is parent to Thumb Cellular, Agri-Valley Broadband, Agri-Valley Services and Pigeon Telephone Company, an independent local exchange carrier.

  • Previously announced participants in Verizon Wireless' LTE in Rural America program include Cross Telephone, Bluegrass Cellular and Pioneer Cellular.
  • In October 2010, Nokia Siemens Networks announced that Michigan-based Agri-Valley Communications, a rural internet service provider, had selected it for a regional rural LTE deployment using 700 MHz spectrum. The contract includes core and radio elements as well as network management and related services. Nokia Siemens Networks said it would supply its Flexi Multiradio Base Stations and Evolved Packet Core (EPC) using Flexi NS (Network Server) and Flexi NG (Network Gateway). It will also provide its NetAct network management system to efficiently monitor, manage and optimize the operator's network. Nokia Siemens Networks' Value-Added Reseller (VAR), Avion Systems will manage installation, commissioning and integration of the solution.