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Speakeasy launches wireless broadband in Seattle

Speakeasy Inc., a privately owned Internet broadband provider, on Wednesday launched an Internet access service for businesses using new wireless technology that it said was faster and easier to deploy than its current broadband service.
/ Source: Reuters

Speakeasy Inc., a privately owned Internet broadband provider, on Wednesday launched an Internet access service for businesses using new wireless technology that it said was faster and easier to deploy than its current broadband service.

Seattle-based Speakeasy has built a loyal base of subscribers in most metro areas of the United States for DSL, which uses telephone lines to connect homes and businesses to the Internet.

The new wireless service, which will be launched first in Seattle, uses WiMAX technology, which the company said will allow users to connect to the Internet at much faster speeds without having to install complicated equipment.

Several major communication providers have said they expect WiMAX to play a key role in the growth of broadband Internet access, especially in urban areas.

Speakeasy Chief Executive Bruce Chatterley said that Seattle was an ideal place to experiment with WiMAX and related technology because its water, hills, tall buildings and trees provide a challenging topology.

Speakeasy is using Seattle’s Space Needle, built for the 1962 World’s Fair, as a broadcast and receiving tower for one of the wireless base stations that power the new service.

Speakeasy said it would start taking orders from Wednesday and begin deploying the service to customers next month.