About the Service

  • $25/month
  • Up to 1000 megabits
  • No contract
  • No installation fee


801-477-0070 (text/voice)



In 1997, technology-savvy neighbors in the Taylor Farms subdivision of Springville, Utah, installed a two-mile outdoor Ethernet network that provided high-speed Internet service to homes in the neighborhood.  New technology was developed—a novel combination of wired and wireless data technology, and was subsequently named “AirSwitch”.  The new technologies that were developed enabled the installation of high-speed networks in a harsh outdoor environment, including lightning and static protection, corrosion resistance, UV resistance, ground differential protection, water submersion, multiple-point fault protection and live re-routing, extreme operating temperatures and extremely large network management.

In three years the network grew to pass tens of thousands of people in three cities.  In 1999 it was the largest layer-two Ethernet network in the world.  Customers could subscribe to 100-megabit Internet service for only $19.95 per month, matching the price of a lot of slow dial-up services being offered at the time.

In 2000, a majority ownership of AirSwitch was sold to tycoons in Utah and California, and the company was renamed to SwitchPoint Networks to eliminate confusion with wireless technologies.  The new owners’ strategy was to position the company for an IPO, and they led the company in a new direction as a developer and manufacture of innovative broadband technologies and a supplier and licensor to infrastructure companies.  SwitchPoint’s customers included many large private and public corporations, including Enron, WorldCom, and Qwest, and SwitchPoint was in a strong position to supply the next generation of broadband-enabling technology.

However, by the Fall of 2001, most of SwitchPoint’s clients had filed for bankruptcy and the industry was turning upside down.  After the attacks on 9/11, the telecommunications industry collapsed.  SwitchPoint struggled to find a market for its product and then was dissolved in 2003.

BackFence Network was created to continue operation of the prototype neighborhood network that was left behind. The name refers to the roots of the AirSwitch/SwitchPoint projects in that the broadband network was installed along the back fences of the homes to which service was provided. Today BackFence provides gigabit Internet service to 250 homes in northwest Springville, Utah, for only $25/month, and is operated and maintained by the neighborhood.

The Founders of the Neighborhood Network in 1998