> Wisper Internet

Fast, Reliable, And Affordable Wireless Internet Service

Wisper Internet provides fast, reliable, and affordable wireless internet service to homes and businesses across the rural Midwest—often when no other providers will.

Wisper, which takes its name from the acronym for “wireless internet service provider,” began out of a garage sixteen years ago, where founder Nathan Stooke conscripted friends and family to help him build the antennas and radios he needed to bring wireless internet to households who’d been told it wasn’t available to them. Nathan wasn’t disrupting an industry so much as starting one.

“We bought the right pigtails, we bought the right power supplies—we never used a Pringles can,” Nathan jokes, “but we were making everything in the garage and going out to install them on people’s houses, and I saw that we were the first to be doing something like this.”

He was right. Almost since its inception, Wisper has been installing “small cells” in the rural areas it services. A small cell provides very clear service to households within a small range, acting as a “repeater” of a service tower nearby. Wisper’s smallest tower, by the way, is a five-foot pole that broadcasts down a row of trees, providing five or six households with internet service.

Today, the small cell model is popular among larger providers—but Wisper started using it fifteen years ago.

“It took them that long to catch up to us, and it’s kind of cool that they’ve verified that our network design is really good and allows us to provide really good service to our customers,” Nathan says, adding, “If it was easy to build out into these areas, the larger companies would have done it.”

Wisper is as solution-driven as it is committed to customer service, which is clear from the way the company works to get everyone connected, no matter the obstacles. It also prides itself on keeping its equipment and service up to date and as fast as possible and on maintaining consistent pricing across all networks, no matter the ease or difficulty of access.

“If we can provide people Internet where they could never get internet before, it means they get connected to the rest of the world while living where they want to,” Nathan says. “That’s an amazing ability, to bring the rest of the world to a rural location in the Midwest.”

And now, thanks to its successful bid on the Connect America Fund (CAF), Phase II, and the resultant $220 million paid out over ten years, Wisper can keep building its legacy far into the future—and into far more communities, most of them throughout Missouri.

While some saw the funding as an overnight success for Wisper, Nathan says that isn’t quite the case: “I like to say that we’re an overnight success story sixteen years in the making. I think a lot of small businesses see people who are wildly successful and think that success wasn’t as hard to come by as theirs will be. But if you are a founder, there is a lot of work that goes into that. You have to be persistent in what you’re trying to create.”

 

Wisper looks forward to reaching its full potential thanks to the CAF II funding, and it’s also looking forward to giving back. Wisper University is one such means of doing so.

The program provides affordable best-practices-based training to other WISPs and their employees. Wisper University trainees learn everything from inventory control to installation, spending three days on in-class learning and hands-on simulation.

Wisper has even built “the dog house” to allow trainees to see exactly how installation works, from a house’s inside out and its outside in. That’s followed by an optional two-day ride-along, where trainees shadow a Wisper installer and so solidify their learning with real-world practice.

Nathan sees it as a way to empower the whole industry. “It’s back to my core belief. We need education and we need training if we want to have the industry rise up; everyone benefits from that.”

Wisper ISP

www.wisperisp.com
(800) 765-7772
[email protected]
9711 Fuesser Rd. Mascoutah, IL 62258

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