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Published on February 15th, 2013 | by Alexis Argent

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4Gon interview LightPointe on advantages of LightPointe product over rivals, HyBridge series, + LightPointe future plans

Kathleen Reed from 4Gon Solutions speaks to John Taylor, Vice President of Sales for LightPointe, a wireless bridge leader in point-to-point Free Space Optics.

Kathleen and John discuss why people should purchase LightPointe products over rivals brands, the HyBridge series and what is planned next for LightPointe.

4Gon: Broadcasting from various countries around the world, using wireless technology, this is 4G Uncovered – A 4Gon Solutions UK podcast. I am Kathleen Reed. Joining us today is John Taylor, VP of Sales for LightPointe, a wireless bridge leader in point to point Free Space Optics. A part of this podcast is even being recorded over a wireless link. Thank you for joining us today, John! To start, could you please give 4Gon customers a brief history of Lightpointe and what marketplace do your products reach?

John Taylor, Lightpointe: Sure, I would be glad to. Lightpointe was founded in 1998. This year, we’re actually celebrating our 15th year anniversary. We sell in carriers, the enterprise market and the government, both local and national. We’re in the security market, where we’re backhauling CCTVs, and we sell to schools – small, large schools, universities, campus related sort of things. We’re backed by a $1billion Silicon Valley enterprise and we are very stable. We’re not out raising VC money and we are growing. Recently our CEO Heinz Willebrand was named on EE Times list of ‘Forty Innovators Creating the Next Generation Electronics.’

4Gon: Why should 4Gon customers purchase the Lightpointe range over rival technology such as Ubiquiti, Ligowave, BridgeWave, SAF FreeMile and Redline?

John Taylor, Lightpointe: Good question. Lightpointe has a very unique value proposition when it comes to high capacity outdoor wireless bridges – and in particular, full-line rate gigabit. Solutions provided by competitors are either slower in speed and won’t satisfy the customer’s need for bandwidth or are far too expensive. With Lightpointe, customers can get a real, full duplex line speed, low-latency gigabit solution for less $10,000. None of the above competitors can offer this. Most Lightpointe products are license free. Our products are immune to RF congestion and interference. This allows co-location with other RF systems, as well as FSO systems. We have the worlds’ best security, which helps address any eavesdropping issues. The systems are easy to install. We offer excellent warranties and training.

4Gon: With so few manufacturers currently in the FSO marketplace, how do you separate yourself from others?

John Taylor, Lightpointe: Lightpointe is #1 is the FSO market share. With the AirStrata G and the LightPointe HyBridge LXR-5, no other FSO company has a Quad Beam system with auto-tracking. We had the lowest cost, fully equipped gigabit Ethernet bridge in the LightPointe AirLite G. We have key patents on FSO units for multi-frequency, rate adaptive LightPointe HyBridge systems, which combines RF and FSO – and this is also valid in the UK. We have two of the foremost leaders (or innovators) in Free Space Optics – Dr. Sullivan and Dr. Kube.

We manufacture here in San Diego at the USA headquarters. We use high-quality parts and components that are sourced from around the world, including precision German lenses. We also use most advanced pixel laser technology we can find for longer life and reliability of the product.

4Gon: Can you tell us about your HyBridge series, which utilizes both laser technology and radio backup?

John Taylor, Lightpointe: Sure. The HyBridge solution is a very unique system. It can be envisioned as a multi-frequency, rate adaptive system. It is always automatically adjusting itself toward environmental conditions. The HyBridge runs at full duplex, gigabit speed. It automatically throttles down to a lower RF speed connection in case there’s an environmental condition that impacts that gigabit transmission or the FSO system. The way it operates is like any other rate adaptive radio solution, with the difference that the highest speed modulation is gigabit for FSO.

Other approaches that have tried to establish such a feature in the past uses an external switch that runs entry protocols, which have a lot of problems, causing customers headaches with switch responses or failure to switch seamlessly to an alternative path. The HyBridge system solves all of this in a simple, compact package. The customer may want to use their own radio solution, which can also be easily accomplished – either an existing wireless bridge can be upgraded or added later. In short, a HyBridge approach stands for always on.

4Gon: What’s next for Lightpointe and where do you see the marketplace heading over the next few years?

John Taylor, Lightpointe: Well obviously, we’re seeing increased radiofrequency congestion. This will lead to more interference issues, and this will require a need for FSO equipment. Over time, older and slower radios will drive demand for gigabit replacements. Then, there’s that small solid movement with the ever increasing 4G bandwidth growth in cellular systems, 4G Routers. Over time, we’ll see lower prices in all our products. Then, there’s the eventual move towards multi-gigabit systems – one of which Lightpointe already sells. That’s the LightPointe AirBeam 2.5 gigabit.

4Gon: I really want to thank you for your time today, John. John Taylor is the VP of Sales for LightPointe. This has been a 4G Uncovered podcast, brought to you by 4Gon Solutions. For more information, please visit www.4Gon.co.uk.

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