Mountain Area Information Network


We're grateful for the "word of mouth" recommendations we receive from our wireless subscribers. Take a look at why so many people are using and recommending MAIN's wireless broadband service:

Dear folks,

I am a single parent and a school teacher. I have taught in Buncombe County Schools, Asheville City Schools, Evergreen Community Charter School, Asheville Catholic, and Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College within the past 14 years. I am working on my Master's Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell in Massachusetts, a well known public university with an exceptional program in Education. . . .

There are no local universities that offer that degree. As a home owner, tax payer, single parent, and instructor for A-B Tech, I would not be able to pursue this without my wireless internet. . . .

Asheville is my home. With this degree, I can help other teachers become more effective as teachers. With this degree, I can help students learn more assiduously. . . .

I write this letter to help you understand the importance of wireless internet in my life as it will affect our children and teachers.

Andrew Weatherly

When I first moved to Asheville, I loved the fact that I could jump on MAIN's free service for a couple of minutes to do a quick apartment search on my laptop. It saved me from having to track down a business or library that offered free Internet. It's great to live in a city that has such forward thinking folks that want to provide everyone the opportunity to the Internet.

Jay Middleton

Hi all at MAIN,

I am delighted to tell the world about how much having wireless broadband helps me. I am one of the publishers of WNC Woman magazine and work from my home. I live in rural Madison County and there is no DSL or cable available where I live. Luckily we are on top of a hill so the broadband was the perfect solution. I used to try to do all the work of sending huge files to the printer, etc. on dial-up... can you imagine!

Thanks to MAIN and their tech support I have never had a day of down time in the past two years of having broadband.

Best wishes for continued growth and service to the community,

Sandi Tomlin-Sutker

I love the local internet service first and foremost because it's LOCAL. I'm putting the money right back into my community and supporting a small business who I can trust and believe in.

I like that I can physically go to your office on Wall Street if I have an issue, and the customer service has been great when our modem was having troubles.

We don't have, need or want TV in the house, so this is one of the only ways to get just Internet without a phone or cable. Oh, and I also totally dig that it comes wirelessly to the house!

Thank you MAIN for the service you provide.

jessica potter
Happy Customer

I live and work in rural Madison County but conduct business with people all over the country and the world. Until MAIN offered wireless internet service that I could access, I was severely hampered in my ability to do the research and maintain the connections I require to do my work. Now, I can work from home as easily as I can from our office in Asheville or anywhere else for that matter. I literally have access to the world from my little house at the end of a country road.

This single technology has improved my life immeasurably. My overhead is lower because I don't need to travel as much and can use a home office for most of my work. I get a lot more done by working without distraction and foregoing commutes. At the same time, with instant messaging I'm always in contact with my coworkers. In a nutshell, I can access scientific papers while streaming music and my coffee breaks can include weeding the garden. Believe me, that's an improvement in lifestyle.

In addition, and even more importantly, MAIN's wireless service allows me to live more responsibly by reducing my consumption of gas. By working at home, I'm able to drive much less which means less carbon emitted into the atmosphere. This isn't the forum for a rant on global climate change, but let's suffice it to say that it's imperative that we all reduce the fuels we burn in our daily lives. MAIN is helping me in this important work.

All of this praise would be pointless if MAIN didn't do a good job. I have been a MAIN customer for many years and I have always found them to be wonderful to work with. When there are problems with the service, they act promptly to find the solution. Servicing rural wireless installation has to be a real challenge. They do an incredible job of keeping everything running smoothly.


Clarke Snell

I heard a lecture at Senior Leadership Asheville at the Governor's residence last year by the director of MAIN and was impressed. I then learned that you were available to some homes in the Asheville area so I called and asked. Luke Rice came to my home and found that I have a direct line of site to the Vanderbilt Apts from my computer area. He hooked me up. I had been using a land line at 26.6 or 28.8. Vast improvement now.

The very learned computer techs at HELP have helped me 2 times and were very patient and thorough.

Thanks Luther B

A quick note to let you know how much I appreciate the MAIN server. I am on the broad band and it works great and whenever you have to fix something I am given much advance notice. It is important for me to support a local group like yours and appreciate you well you respond to my needs for new cords, fixing cut wires, etc. What a great asset to our community.

I am in a health care profession and as such, do billing for insurance companies. We are going to be doing all of ours online soon and I hope to continue using MAIN as the source for this.

Thanks for being in Asheville.


John C. Faherty, D.C.

This broadband is amazing. It has transformed my computer from being simply a machine to actually becoming a tool. I now daily tune into WPVM for real news with Democracy Now - thank you - and as for my business - the speed for email and research on the Internet has finally helped me become fully functional out here in the woods of Madison County.

Thank you again.

Jennifer Lapiduis

[Your installer] Ron did a fine job installing our wireless broadband service today. He teamed up well with my tree guy, and they had successfully completed the project in 2 hours... Ron was correct in his assessment of which tree to mount the antenna in. However, at my suggestion, they attempted another tree before going to the one he recommended. He's a good man.

As you'll see from the contract, I've signed up for the 1.5 Mbps service. Ron said the initial default speed is "best available." All I know is that, from the start, it's blazingly faster than the pathetic Direcway Satellite service.

I took some photos of the aerial acrobatics, and have posted them on our personal Web site.

I look forward to getting reacquainted with true broadband service, and spreading the word!

Perry Steinhoff


I've been a customer of MAIN's since they first brought internet service to Madison County a number of years ago. I remember my wife and I sitting around the computer monitor scratching our heads like a couple of curious apes as we waited for our first glimpse of the World Wide Web to appear. Well, since then the internet has become a part of our lives. When MAIN recently made high speed wireless service available in our area, we were excited to try it.

Here's my report: Okay, I know we all live out in the country and have our priorities straight and everything, but, I'm telling you, that dial-up connection has got to go. Why? Well, first, the high speed connection has...well, speed. Of course, everything you did before will be much faster. Graphics download quickly, there's no more waiting for minutes to download a single page. Surfing the internet becomes almost as fast as turning the pages of a book. However, it's not only that you can do the same old stuff faster, but now you can do a whole bunch of things you couldn't do at all before. Like for example download all of those free software updates that have been out of reach. An update that would have taken hours now takes just takes a couple of minutes. A lot of these updates are very important security fixes to stop viruses and other malicious attempts to mess with your computer.

Another new trick you can perform is talking on the phone while being on the internet, or someone else can talk on the phone while you're on the internet, or... well, you get the idea. The wireless connection frees up your phone line which is almost always a good thing. For me, though, the most exciting aspect of our new connection is internet radio. You can access radio stations from all over the country and all over the world playing whatever kind of music, political talk, or pretty much anything else that might strike your fancy. I for example love strange jazz, weird electronic music, and the funkiest funk music. They just don't play that stuff on the local AM stations or WNCW. Now I can have my Madison County cake and eat some funky jazz, too. I am living in the best of both worlds, and I owe it all to MAIN!

Clarke Snell

I listen to radio stations from around the world WHILE I publish my art work online.......well, not really, but it really is a wonderful improvement to our Internet experience.

Thanks so much for all the effort that must have gone into making it a reality.

A very happy camper,

John Skemp

We are about 7 wire miles from the central phone office. Our line speed, since the "improvement" has been typically 16.8KBS. This means that when someone sends us pictures of their children we could be tied up waiting for mail for up to an hour. If there were maintenance on the operating system or office, the 58 or 80MB of code to be downloaded to fix problems or keep our systems up to date would take days to get.

That's all changed. Our wireless connection at 256KBS allows sending and receiving pictures, software downloads, etc. in minutes or seconds. We are now able to participate in the Internet at the current design point for the software. I expect in the next few years we will see and even larger design point for the systems using the internet and we will be well positioned to take advantage of those as well.

I realize this isn't a "special" story with lots of human interest hooks. But for Madison County with a small population and a large, difficult terrain this is a story about being able to live in a beautiful place without a lot of other people and still be able to participate in the modern world. I expect this is akin to the building of Interstate 40 into these mountains. With the advent of easy transportation into these mountains the culture of the rest of the nation and the rest of the world could begin to migrate into these hills. Now, with adequate bandwidth of the Internet, that migration can continue apace.

Thanks for your efforts in bringing this to us.

Peter Gordon

Despite my intial concerns over cost, aesthetics, and many questions over whether the technology itself would be workable for us, particularly given the unconventional location/construction of our house, installation turned out to be quite painless (done in less than 1 hour), the little square antenna is pretty unobtrusive, & the time lag between placing our order & service being up & running was practically nil.

Our new download speed is a great improvement over dial-up (and we're at just 512k). Until now, I had to banish e-mails from certain friends to my unwanted SPAM list, because of their habit of sending video & music clips that constantly froze up my e-mail programs in mid-download. We're now virtually instant-messaging, even with big attachments, & trading photo albums with our friends in Kenya (where our family has lived & worked), catching the daily news from Kenya TV, and enjoying the African Top 40 in Kiswahili -- all as if it were being broadcast next door.

Thanks so much for your commitment to good customer service and to the quality of life & livelihood for folks in all our WNC communities (but especially for us here in the boonies)!

Marcy Onieal & Jimmy Lamm

Learn more about our wireless broadband service, or call (828) 255-0182 or (866) 962-6246 toll-free.

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