Locally based wireless internet service provider Bayfield Wireless announced Friday it was one of the winning bidders of the recent Federal Communications Commission (FCC) wireless spectrum auction, securing new spectrum for the next ten years for the region.

The FCC recently concluded its nationwide auction for the new Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) priority access licenses. There were 271 bidders that qualified to participate in the CBRS auction by county for priority access to spectrum in all 3,233 counties across the United States. The auction closed on August 25, 2020 after 76 rounds and raised more than $4.58 billion in bids by the 228 winning bidders. 

Securing this new CBRS spectrum ensures Bayfield Wireless can continue its expansion of high-speed Internet service throughout Bayfield, Ashland, Price and Sawyer counties. Bayfield Wireless founder Mike Cariveau of Bayfield said, “Knowing we’ve secured long term priority access to this important part of the wireless spectrum is critical to our future expansion plans. The additional capacity and capability this licensed spectrum provides Bayfield Wireless will help further justify our future investments to serve our local communities. It’s exciting to think about the importance of this to our mission to serve the unserved and underserved rural and remote areas of our region.” 

Bayfield Wireless is a Wireless Internet Service Provider (WISP) serving local customers in the Town of Bayfield, the Town of Russell, the Red Cliff Tribal Lands, Madeline Island, and the Town of Bayview since its network went online in March 2019. The company provides fiber-speed Internet service to fixed locations using wireless technologies to cost effectively serve lower density rural and remote areas.