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KINBER announces first PennREN customer


The Keystone Initiative for Network Based Education and Research's Pennsylvania Research and Education Network has its first customer: The Community College of Beaver County.

KINBER is a nonprofit organization whose members include the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education, the Pennsylvania Commission for Community Colleges and the Hospital & Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania.

All members are eligible to purchase services, but CCBC is the first to do so. CCBC leaders said after the initial start-up investment, the service will reduce their costs. They’re starting with internet but may choose to enable other options such as a library management system, video conferencing and synchronous online courses.

KINBER has built about 500 miles of the high-speed fiber-optic PennREN, which will cover more than 1,600 miles when completed, according to its website.

Jeff Reel, KINBER CEO and executive director, noted that early adopter discounts will be extended to any qualified KINBER member who signs a service agreement before Feb. 28, 2013. Other services that will be offered to members during the inaugural year include dark fiber, metro ethernet and optical transport across PennREN.