Physical access to the area is chiefly available via a 27-hour upstream boat trip to Manaus, But now the 114,000 residents of Parintins are suddenly getting online access to medical, educational and commercial resources.
Intel chairman Craig Barrett attended the dedication ceremony. "Technology has expanded what is possible in Parintins," he said, according to a company statement. "It is now a place where wireless broadband links to the Internet bring the expertise of specialists, sophisticated medical imaging and the world's libraries to a community reachable only by airplane or boat."
The network is deployed with WiMAX and Wi-Fi gear supplied by Intel and its partners in the project, Cisco, CPqD, Embratel, Proxim, and Brazil's Bradesco Foundation. Universities supporting the effort include the Amazonas State University, Amazonas Federal University, and Sao Paulo University.
At the ceremony, Parintins Mayor Frank Bi Garcia noted that the city's isolation made it impossible to bring in broadband by cable lines. The access is via satellites and antennas. The network will facilitate a telemedicine program for Parintins' 32 doctors, helping the city prevent the spread of leprosy and AIDS.