April 26, 2012:
ITX Provides Wireless Internet Access and Emergency Communications Support for Cambria Radio Club
Two prime Wide Area Network Repeater AllStar Node locations are now connected to WAN-RS (WANRS.com)
with ITX wireless services. Cambria Radio Club (CambriaRadio.com) is a general interest radio club
and the home of ARES http://www.wpaares.org ( Amateur Radio Emergency Service ) for Cambria County.
Although membership is centered in Cambria County, the Club’s members also come from many other areas
in and around Cambria, Blair, Indiana, Somerset, Warren, and Westmoreland counties. While an Amateur
Radio license is required for amateur radio operations unlicensed individuals are invited to join as
associate members. The club has grown to offer FREE VE Amateur Radio Testing and recently formed a
relationship with UPJ Electrical Engineering providing free testing services.
Cambria Radio Club is also affiliated with the American Radio Relay League, (http://www.arrl.org) the
national association of Amateur Radio operators. With the wireless Internet service provided by ITX to
our club repeaters located on Laurel Mountain and in Ebensburg, PA we can provide wide area connectivity
through the Node Connections on the Wide Area Network Repeater System for community service events or
emergency operations as amateur radio operators provided during the recent Johnstown Flood and Flight
August 1, 2011:
ITX Aquires Internet Customers from Shutack Computer Solutions
In The Stix Broadband, LLC. is proud to announce that effective today we have aquired the internet customers from
Shutack Computer Solutions (CSC), another authorized service provider on the Cambria Connected network. We look
forward to servicing the customers of CSC with the same excellent service that we have been providing In The Stix
customers for several years. We are excited to continue growing and look forward to servicing our current and new customers.
March 4, 2010:
ITX Aquires CamConn
In The Stix Broadband, LLC. is proud to announce that effective today we have aquired CamConn.net, another
authorized service provider on the Cambria Connected network has become part of In The Stix Broadband, LLC.
We look forward to servicing the customers of CamConn with the same excellent service that we have been providing
In The Stix customers for several years. We are excited to continue growing and look forward to servicing our current
and new customers.
Previous CamConn.net customer will continue to be serviced according to their current contracts until further notice.
August 19, 2009: Rural Broadband and the Stimulus Package
In The Stix Broadband, LLC. was featured in a very nice piece on the 11 o'clock news on WTAJ TV covering
central Pennsylvania. Below is a copy of the piece and a link to a youtube copy of the clip.
From WTAJ-TV News:
Broadband internet is heading for the hills, and federal stimulus dollars could help it get there.
In the Stix Broadband started providing internet in June 2008. Now they've got a hundred customers, customers that wires can't get to and cables can't reach. The company goes out to people’s homes to test signal strength. The In the Stix Broadband guys say they have 17 transmitters and if you can see one, like the one on the Cresson Mountain Range, than you can get their internet service.
Cambria County owns the transmitters, but can't sell internet access themselves. Robert Dillon says there are four companies that contract with the county. In the Stix Broadband has more than 40 percent of the business.
Robert Weakland says it's perfect for places like Loretto, where it is very rural and there is no actual connection to a phone line. Weakland repairs cub cadet tractors. He buys and sells a lot of parts over the internet. He's had In the Stix Broadband for over a year now. Before that he had dial-up internet because it was the only option. He says his new service is unbelievable.
The Federal Stimulus Plan has 7.2 billion dollars to get broadband to rural areas. In the Stix has a couple of projects in the works involving stimulus dollars. Dillon can't say too much but the deals would help them expand to other counties in our area.
The state will apply for the stimulus money this week.
June 18, 2008: Two ISPs on Cambria Connected: In The Stix and Digital Razor
ISP-Planet wrote a very nice piece on the new Cambria Connected network and the service providers
that were offering services through the network at the time. In The Stix was at the forefront of
this offering and has stayed ahead of the pack ever since.
Excerpt From ISP-Planet:
Three ISPs are serving customers, as of this month, on the network of Cambria County in Pennsylvania. For more on the network, called Cambria Connected, see CONXX Builds a Network for Cambria County.
[ISP-Planet] interviewed the owners of two ISPs. Robert Dillion, owner of In The Stix broadband is a normal WISP owner. He's young, eager, and growing a business that started on a tower on his parents' property.
Mike Burkett, co-founder of Digital Razor is a veteran of the ISP business. He was part of the management team of an ISP in 1996 and co-founded Digital Razor in 1999 as a Web host.
In The Stix
There are thousands of Wireless ISPs (WISPs) across the U.S., many of them with fewer than 100 customers. They started up in backyards and homes in places that have no broadband service. The typical proprietor is either a college kid who cannot live at home without broadband or a retired person (usually from the tech industry) who has moved into a rural town and, also, cannot live without broadband. Robert Dillion has been in business as In The Stix broadband for two years.
"I started out serving my family and friends," he says. His home is Nicktown, PA, population 1,021.
The Web site for In The Stix is the bare bones, but it does have the two things every ISP must: a good AUP and TOS.
He has one tower, on his parents' property, that he says is high enough to serve a three-mile radius. He says that foliage is a greater obstacle than the mountains.
"We're able to get through better than I thought we would, but some I thought we could serve, we couldn't get to. One lady started crying on the phone because we couldn't get it to her," says Dillon.
With a service area of about 400 to 450 families, some of whom he cannot reach, Dillion has signifant market penetration, about 10 to 20 percent. All of this, while working part-time on the business, mostly evenings and weekends. We asked him a few questions about his WISP:
When did you first hear about Cambria Connected?
"I first talked with CONXX about a year ago, when they were talking about doing a deal with Cambria County. I learned more when they talked to Verizon."
Do you own any equipment?
"I purchase Alvarion equipment to connect to Cambria Connected. Cambria Connected offers bulk pricing to ISPs through the Alvarion Comnet program."
Has Cambria Connected changed the business?
"My wife is more enthusiastic about In The Stix now, with Cambria Connected, and propsective customers are more confident in my service. I have now formed an LLC."
Won't your business grow fast on day one of Cambria Connected?
"The business will quadruple before too long."
So will you go full-time, or hire people?
"I hope to move to full-time on In The Stix. I might bring on subcontractors, but not employees. I see this as a long term opportunity. As a one man shop with a home office, I have low overhead. The business is debt free, personally financed."
Rural network builders say the network will keep young people from leaving and bring business to the county. Are you seeing this?
"I do see the looks on the kids' faces when I install broadband, and then I see the look on the bigger kids faces! The parents are just as excited about it."