Monday, June 27, 2011

South Central Wireless Bites the Dust

A few days ago South Central Communciations (SCC) of southern Utah stopped offering cellular service. This means their customers have been set free and their employees have gone home. SCC operated a good network and they were the only cellular service in several remote corners of Utah. Their Internet, phone and video services continue to operate as usual.

It'ss distressing that SCC could find no takers for their wireless looks like they couldn't give it away. This did not come as a complete surprise as South Central notified their 7,000 wireless customers in advance and helped them switch to another wireless carrier. Part of that assistance was keeping those towers where they were the only cellular service in town operating, with the assumption that their CDMA operating partners (Verizon, Sprint, etc.) can still roam on those towers. Who operates those towers now and in the future is not clear.

This may reflect the plight of small carriers all across the US, even those with other strong communications departments. So far we haven't received any official announcement from SCC. Most of our information comes from those directly affected by the changes. This reduction in service also affects some of the tiny carriers in Utah and surrounding states that helped each other with intersystem roaming, and will affect our coverage maps for those systems. We will release additional information as we get it.

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