LTE and WiMAX Networks at NMU

LTE and WiMAX are the next generation (4G) of wireless, with LTE being the most current of the similar wireless technologies. The LTE and WiMax networks have much broader access than the WiFi signal, meaning that you can connect to the NMU network from more places off campus than ever before. However, NMU LTE and WiMAX are not a replacement for the NMU WiFi network.  Connecting to 802.11 agn or 802.11ac WiFi or to an orange wired gigabit data jack should always be your choice when you are on the Northern campus. LTE and WiMAX where available are alternatives when you are off campus.

Connecting to LTE

  • How to complete installation of LTE? Click here to go to the Academic Computing Web site, go to "Computing News" and select the NMU LTE Update link for your model of notebook.
     
  • What to expect from LTE connection?  This link brings you to a page with a detailed explanation of how to find LTE and what to expect when trying to use the LTE network.
     
  • Even though the LTE network is seen on campus and usable, it is not meant for wireless access when on campus. The LTE notebook's have a WiFi and an LTE card. The WiFi network was designed for high density in building and outdoor use on and close to campus. The LTE network should be used when NMU WiFi is not available. The WiFi network is 5-10 times faster than the LTE network. 

Connecting to WiMAX

  • How to complete installation of WiMAX? Click here to go to the Academic Computing Web site, go to "Computing News" and select the NMU WiMAX Update link for your model of notebook.
     
  • What to expect from WiMAX connection?  This link brings you to a page with a detailed explanation of how to find WiMAX and what to expect when trying to use WiMAX.
     
  • Even though the WiMAX network is seen on campus and usable, it is not meant for wireless access when on campus. The notebook's have WiFi / WiMAX combination card, not WiMAX only. The WiFi network was designed for high density in building and outdoor use on and close to campus. The WiMAX network should be used when NMU WiFi is not available. The WiFi network is 20-25 times faster than the WiMAX network. 


Where is it found?

WiMAX/LTE coverage

The NMU WiMAX network covers the cities of Marquette, Gwinn, Ishpeming, Negaunee, K.I. Sawyer, Houghton, and Chocolay township. This map contains details about coverage areas and expected signal strength. You can help us identify hot spots and dead spots within the city by sending information to helpdesk@nmu.edu with "WiMAX" in the subject line. The LTE network is currently onlyy covering Marquette and Negaunee. Coverage mirroring the WiMAX network will be complete before the end of the Winter 2016 semester. The WiMAX network is scheduled to be turned off for the start of the fall 2017 semester.

The LTE and WiMAX networks are not targeted to work in the residence halls or on campus. This is why the wireless card in your NMU notebook is both WiFi and WiMAX enabled. When on campus, use WiFi.  You may have to turn off your WiMAX and turn on your WiFi to access the WiFi network.


When should it be used?

LTE and WiMAX coverage is measured in miles and not feet like WiFi.  However, LTE and WiMAX networks are not faster than WiFi networks, they just have a larger coverage area. In fact, 802.11agn or 802.11ac WiFi is about 20-25 times faster than the WiMAX and 5-10 times faster than the LTE network. Average WiMAX speeds are 100kb-1mb UL and 1-7mb DL and average LTE speeds are 100kb-5mb UL and 1-25mb DL depending on distance from the serving tower site and building construction of the building you are in.

So, when you are on the NMU campus, you should turn LTE or WiMAX off and then connect to the NMU WiFi network as it much faster and has better in building signal strength.  Likewise, when you are on campus and have access to a wired orange data jack, it will always be your fastest, strongest Internet connection.  But when you're off campus, LTE or WiMAX is what you should choose to use when avaiable.


Why is LTE and WiMAX important to NMU?

Northern has the largest private educational LTE and WiMAX network in the United States and is one of the first universities to deploy a 4G WiMAX network. With more than two-thirds of NMU students living off campus, being able to provide Internet access off campus helps expand the learning environment.


Who are our partners in building the network?

The cities, towns, townships, and villages throughout the area  surrounding the University who share infrastructure needed to house the LTE and WiMAX equipment.

The world's leading technology companies used to build the new LTE and existing WiMAX network, including Huawei, Intel, Lenovo, Cisco and Motorola. These tech leaders are including NMU students in the research and implementation of this endeavor.

NMU thanks all of our partners for their continued support!

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