WiMAX Network Retirement Accelerated

Friday 11, 2015

Due to an interference issue between the NMU WiMAX and LTE broadband networks, the timeline to retire the NMU WiMAX network is being accelerated, according to Dave Maki, chief technology officer. 

“In some tower locations, there just isn’t enough physical space to separate the respective equipment to eliminate interference between the signals. This causes broadband streaming interruptions.  To solve the problem, we’ve decided to immediately begin to take down the WiMAX network rather than to wait until the previously announced 2017 date,” said Maki.

Maki said the WiMAX network will come down in stages, starting with the areas which are most affected by the interference problem, which are Gwinn, Sawyer, Ishpeming, Negaunee and Chocolay Township (not the NMU Golf Course).  These areas will convert to LTE-only by Dec. 31.

Discontinuing the WiMAX network means that NMU network users in Gwinn, Sawyer, Ishpeming, Negaunee and Chocolay Township who were issued NMU WiMAX capable ThinkPad and MacBook computers  will need a piece of equipment – a MyFi LTE portable router – that will make accessing NMU’s LTE network possible. The MyFi LTE router will be issued to users in those areas who are currently accessing WiMAX with an NMU-issued, WiMAX-capable ThinkPad or MacBook and it must be returned with the computer at end of lease. Details about the router pickup will be emailed to affected NMU network users in those areas.

All other users in those affected areas have the option to purchase a LTE CPE at reduced cost if they trade in their WiMAX CPE at Micro Repair.  Users who bring in their WiMAX CPE will be given a $25 credit towards the purchase of an indoor, outdoor, or portable LTE CPE.

Maki said the rest of the conversion schedule will be moving toward LTE-only for NMU Golf Course in March, and Marquette City and Township and Big Bay over the spring and summer, with a completion date of August 2016.

Questions about this WiMAX phase out should be directed to the NMU Help Desk at 906-227-2468 or helpdesk@nmu.edu.


Kristi Evans
News Director