Step 1: Assessment (2-3 days)
FCC and other reported data is inaccurate and often does not give a complete understanding of exactly where there
Reach out to local school board and educational leaders who can give a quick perspective into the needs of the
community. County commissioners, local city mayors and managers, and state representatives may have already
“pain point” areas that need networks. Starting a Facebook group or page which solicits the voices of the
also be a great place to get started.
Locate a local technical help for the management of the network. These local network operators are automatically
monthly fee through Althea’s software and we provide full tier one tech support for operators. This can often be
already performing IT, camera installs, or computer services in your area. Althea is very easy to use even for
with no prior knowledge of networking. We provide education, tier 1 support and dashboard tools for the network
Step 2: Planning (1 to 2 weeks)
Once an area has been identified, we set up a sign-up website, like www.althea.net/clatskanie. Interested
can sign up, and get easily routed to a calendar app to sign up for an installation or a call to answer questions.
becomes an easy way to manage new potential subscribers and get the word out about the new network.
Finding a wholesale connection can often be the most challenging part of starting a network, however, there are
options that are based on using resources that already have connection. We can find the creative solutions that
best fit for your community.
A public building like a library, school, university, or city hall. Working together with the appropriate contacts
can build out a sustainable solution that can provide some revenue and utilize public space and bandwidth
public wifi-hotspot can be built alongside the network, providing immediate resources to people needing to access
internet. This may be a slower option, because in many cases public entities are overwhelmed with other aspects of
An on-net business. Many businesses are experiencing slow downs and extra income from roof lease or providing free
internet can be a welcome proposition. Contact the wholesale department of the fiber provider to negotiate a rapid
provisioning of the connection for wholesale use. For an “on-net” building this can often be as little as 1 to 2
Building of the main infrastructure can take place while the service order for wholesale connection is moving
the system, so you are ready to provide subscribers with broadband as soon as the network comes online.
Current ISPs. Often it is not economically viable for the incumbent ISP to service an area using legacy methods,
they are happy to grow their network using Althea’s unique model. This can be a win-win situation for everyone
and many ISPs are happy to discuss how this could be arranged.
Getting equipment and installing. Together with our consultants, we can plan, engineer, and source gear for your
network. Most household equipment can then be purchased at buy.althea.net by subscribers, and shipped
the network operator. Because these networks can be built from “neighbor-to-neighbor” instead of large towers or
public right of way, the system is easier to maintain, and affordable and quick to build.
At this point, you have a working network that can start quickly and grow sustainably.
How long does that take?
Other than the backhaul, an Althea network can be built in as little as a few weeks. We don’t have to worry about
building permits, large cash financing, right of way, or coordinating with government or utilities.
What are the hard costs for setting up a new town?
Modeling out a typical 100 person network puts the total cost of hardware at roughly $20k, however Althea networks
decentralize both the cost and the revenue, and the cost of the subscriber equipment is usually paid by the
themselves. In the majority of networks operated by Hawk Networks itself, we model out a 1/2 subsidized equipment
so we can keep take rates higher. While it varies by network, typically an initial startup investment of $5k will
bootstrap the start of the network.