To be fair, you shouldn't leave out OEM products from the discussion (Mikrotik / StarOS) These products are actually competitors to all the lines that were listed herein.

I think the best decission, may be more relevant to what capacity that a WISP intends to need, and finance ability for the size it intends to grow. For example, I believe having the first-in pick of a cell site, will guarantee better performance and reliabilty to the subscribers than the type of Radio that is selected. Thats one of the reasons that we chose Trango, we were able to deploy a huge number of sites cost effectively and reliably with the product, with limited financing and capitol.

Where product justification may come in, is when a WISP scales larger. There is a big benefit to be able to deliver 30 mbps to a sector. The reason is that it allow oversubscription to high ARPU subs when doing PtMP. I can sell 5 mbps speeds and oversubscribe. Thats hard to do on a 10mbps sector. Of course their is the arguement that there is little benefit to having a fast sectors with a limited speed backhaul. But many WISPs that would justify Alvarion, may have fiber at their cell sites or afford Licensed backhaul.

The question is, will your market support the higher vision? For example, if we would have chosen Alvarion 5 years ago, we would have bankrupted, as their was not enough customer awareness to allow us to make enough sales quickly enough to cost justify it. It also depends on roof right fees. When you are paying a premium, it helps to go after higher ARPU and VOIP services to help jsutify the high lease fees. Its harder to make it work for just data revenue. If you have good lease deals, this is not an issue. So part of it is the ratio of antenna lease fee to the capacity of teh radio (capcity including amount of voice it can do).

The point I'm making is that the winner is not necessarilly based on the spec sheet, its based on the business plan.

I'm seeing a clear picture of when and where Alvarion would be the preferred choice, and I see a clear picture of when and where Trango would be the clear choice, but I'm having a hard time homing in on any specific case where Canopy would be the Clear better choice.

I beleive Canopy, is now an adequate choice for just about any of the markets, but where is it the best choice? Maybe Canopy is the product that offers a good compromise to fit into each of the markets? Advantage offers a lit more speed than Trango in some areas, and a little better cost than Alvarion, and although not the lowest or best, it offers affordable products on the low end. I'm sure many Canopy users won't agree with that said statement. But considering price, and business plan, not just features, where would Canopy fit, as the best product for a specfic need?

About the only thing that I've homed in on would be, a location where Horizonatl noise is higher than verticle, and the provider has a large number of Verticle systems planned (GPS sync), and is worried about interfering with himself, and noise is high enough that C/I is a big concern, and the provider may outsource a lot of technical duties, so wants to control high outsourced technical costs by choosing a more consistent product that has less technical firmware issues?

For that reason, I may see where a large national company Canopy for their lower volume sites, that Alvarion was not cost justified for.

For the record, the specfic cases that I feel trango is jsutified as the preferred case, is all cases where Alvarion has not been cost jsutified :-)

I've really been happy with Trango in general, but the reason we are looking for other options is that, we are starting to saturate some 10 mbps sectors, doing a lots more VOIP, and need the flexibilty of external antennas, and as more CPEs are on a sector, its more and more important to ahve SNR radios for troubleshooting. But I'd say that still, 75% of my markets are better positioned with Trango, and I'd not likely replace them all with Alvarion. I'm picking and choosing where I need it and where I don't.

I'd argue that the comparison has to be....

For a starter system, Canopy or Trango?
For a higher capacity system, Alvarion or StarOS/Mikrotik?

I don't really see the point in comparing Trango to Alvarion, they are two totally different capacity platforms. What needs to be decided is which markets would allow you to get the capacity from Alvarion. For example if the nise floor is to high for OFDM PtMP, Trango or Canopy may still be better for the market.

In then when OFDM is jsutified, do you spend the big dollars on Alvarion, or do you buy home brew OEM?

The question comes up, do you pay $3000/$1000 for rigid platform (alvarion), or $300/$300 for a flexible OEM one (StarOS/Mikrotik)?

I'd argue that Alvarion's competitor is the OEM product line.
Alvarion offers:

Legal system
Excellent Support
Right out of the box
Easy to Manage
Smart firmware (but lean to WISP relevent features).
Impossible to misconfigure.
Best VOIP throughput.
Excellent channel to buy from

OEM offers:

Not technically legal
Many headaches (buying, availabilty, configuration and licensing quirks, etc)
Less consistent service (WiFi protocols)
Not the best firmware or troubleshooting tools, but.....
Unbelievable Price!
Additional RF links from one unit, for just $50. (This is big, saving entire radio costs and labor costs, and preventing custom box connection systems that are expensive for relaying). One of these OEM systems will allow a WISP to get to more subscribers quicker than any other system on the market. (higher speeds, and avoiding NLOS by relaying).

If I were Alvarion, I'd be offering radios with Dual Ethernet ports, and/or Dual radios, so WISPs had more flexibilty. I'd argue that its harder to give up the benefits of OEM Flexibility than OEM price, for ambitious operators.

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband

----- Original Message ----- From: "Travis Johnson" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "WISPA General List" <>
Sent: Saturday, September 23, 2006 12:10 AM
Subject: Re: [WISPA] vendor specs

Trango offers many different CPE (5830, Fox, Fox Atlas, etc.). They have listed on their website the Fox Atlas CPE for $149 for a 30 pack pricing. This is a 10Mbps radio and with a $30 dish will reach up to 10 miles.

I currently have a 22 mile 900mhz link with Trango (using an omni on the AP) and a 30.1 mile link with 2.4ghz Trango (also using an omni).

The quantity discount pricing you have listed is very close to Trango's pricing on the 900mhz and 2.4ghz units... except Trango already has a dual polarity antenna AND an external antenna connector as part of that price. How much does the price go up on the Canopy (Cyclone?) to get the connector? Are your guys having to haul two different radios for each frequency just in case?


Anthony Will wrote:

Your numbers are a bit off on the canopy and when i looked on the trango site it looks more in the range of $400 per unit at 30 pack pricing for trango's. I believe your getting that price but at what qualities? I have a couple hundred in the air and I have Midwest Wireless the 5th largest WISP in the country playing in my back yard using Alvarions junk BA2 system all over the place. And I also have a local ILEC, Stonebridge and the remains of Xtratyme all over the rest of my coverage area. My PtmP system is all 900mhz and 2.4 ghz using omni's and I dont have any issues with interference. The longest customer link I have on 900mhz is 18.5 miles and the longest 2.4 link is 12 miles. I use omni's so that I dont completely destroy the airwaves for others that are playing in the same sand box.
Canopy pricing:
AP = $898  (Advantage $1554) Single pricing
CPE = $267 (Advantage $402 ) 25pack pricing Add $40 a unit for 15 mile range (stinger or beehive dish all FCC certified) CPE = $216 (Advantage $324) 100 pack pricing Add $25 a unit for 15 mile range (stinger or beehive dish all FCC certified)

Anthony Will
Broadband Corp.

Travis Johnson wrote:


I changed the subject line to reflect more the direction of this discussion (Trango vs. Canopy vs. Alvarion)... ;)

This is just off the top of my head, and I would love to see more data on any of these radios:

Trango 5830AP - $1,079 retail
Dual polarity
10Mbps (auto up/down ratio)
Easy management (CLI and web)
$149 CPE ($199 up to 10 miles)

Canopy 5.7 AP - $970 (Advantage $1,974)
C/I advantage
Fixed up/down ratio
$490 CPE ($737 advantage)

Alvarion VL AP - $4,500 (rough retail)
36Mbps and 40,000pps
$1,000 CPE

For whatever it's worth, we have over 2,500 CPE in the air and over 2,000 are Trango (900mhz, 2.4ghz, 5.8ghz). The Trango product has worked very well for us, and we are located on some mountaintop repeater locations that literally have over 100 antennas (paging, HAM, WISPs, etc.) within 100 yards of each other.

Our biggest problem is frequency availability at all (regardless of radio choice)... we have a 2.4ghz AP at a repeater station that is "full". We attempted to install a second sector today and ran a site survey at this location.... across the entire 2.4ghz band, the "average" signals ranged from -25 to -55 at the best. :(


Jon Langeler wrote:

Tom, I have nothing to gain or lose by telling you what we've not only extensivley tested but also experienced over 6 years. We started using canopy since it began shipping and at least 100 trango SU between 3 different towers since beta. I just hate to see fellow wisp protest that there isn't a good product and struggle when their actually is a pretty darn good one...and on top of that has an upgrade path in it's vision, it keeps getting better.

ARQ does not affect C/I like FEC does for example. When you say ARQ is fixing any resiliance problems that may be true. But you'll also suffer from increased latency and less throughput during those retransmissions. Not good if you want to support VOIP and keep customers happy. Having a low C/I means the system will be stable more often and maintain a lower retrans. Trango's ARQ is not even an option in the 5800 model which is what you and I probably have a decent percentage of in our Trango networks. Having a low C/I requirement affects other things like increases the range of a product. I'm laying out facts, you can convince yourself of whatever you want...

Jon Langeler
Michwave Tech.

Tom DeReggi wrote:

Nice try, but I've found that comment to be not at all true. I have often chosen to avoid canopy user's channels, but because I am a good WISP neighbor, not because I had to. Why fight if you can cooperate. On a SPEC sheet Canopy does boast the lowest C/I. But Trango's specified C/I was reported before considering ARQ. And Trango has always underspec'd their spec sheets. C/I is not nearly as relevant as SNR resilience anyway. With Arq, we've easilly ran links as low as 4 db above the average noise floor, reliably. There is VERY little difference between the Trango and Canopy C/I in real world usage. The Trango just adds more polarities as more options to work around it, when needed. One of the reasons we like Trango is its resilience to noise, that gives us the abilty to fight it out and stand our ground. The Foxes w/ DISH, have excellent ARQ and resilience to Noise, within their range and LOS.

When we start to have trouble with Trango, is when we start to push the limits of the technology. Its a LOS technology that we attempt NLOS with. My arguement is also not that we can't be the last man standing. Its that when the battle happens the customer sees it, and the customer does not tolerate it. IF a Canopy and Trango went to war, one might survive a little better than the other, but ultimately both customers would feel the interference the majority of the time.

Tom DeReggi
RapidDSL & Wireless, Inc
IntAirNet- Fixed Wireless Broadband

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