Hyperoptic brings wired broadband to one of London’s marinas

Articles

Pleasure-boats at a marina in Melbourne

Fibre-to-the-basement broadband could be seen as a way to add next-generation broadband to a marina

Hyperfast broadband for boats in London’s South Dock marina | ThinkBroadband

Fibre to the barges: Hyperoptic connects houseboats to gigabit broadband | Recombu

UK ISP Hyperoptic Touts Hyperfast 1Gbps Fibre-to-the-Boat Broadband | ISPReview.co.uk

London marina boats get faster broadband than most UK homes | Cable.co.uk

From the horse’s mouth

Hyperoptic

Press Release

My Comments

There are some of us who use boats for more than just sailing around. For some of us, they are our residences but whether you are at a marina or tying up at a quiet shore, the issue of broadband can be a limitation.

Typically, if a marina provides broadband Internet service to its tenants, this would be in the form of Wi-Fi provisioned in the same vein as a hotel’s or caravan park’s public-access Wi-Fi service. This typically involves a few Wi-Fi access points over the marina’s area and a Web-based login experience. On the other hand, if there isn’t any Wi-FI Internet, the sailor would have to use a USB wireless-broadband dongle or a Mi-Fi router to get broadband on the boat and most of these services aren’t very good value for money especially for those who live on a boat.

Draytek Vigor 2860N VDSL2 business VPN-endpoint router press image courtesy of Draytek UK

A dual-WAN router like thsi one coudl earn its keep on a houseboat or yacht

Now Hyperoptic have worked with the Southwark Council in London to provide a more exciting broadband service to sailors who live at the South Dock Marina. They have implemented the same technique used to provide “fibre-to-the-building” or “fibre-to-the-basement” next-generation broadband to multi-tenancy buildings, work they are familiar with, to setting this marina up for wired broadband.

Here, they have a communications hub installed at both the South Dock marina and the Greenland Dock marina along with Cat5e Ethernet cabling toe each of the residential berths. The resident sailors would need to drop an Ethernet cable between the facilities box on the berth and their boat and use a wireless broadband router with Ethernet WAN connection to distribute the broadband across their craft while they are moored at the dock. Of course, the “Mi-Fi” would still be needed when you are out sailing, but this need could be served better through the use of a dual-WAN router that uses a USB connection for mobile-broadband modems as a WAN option.

They subscribe to a private Internet service similar to what we would subscribe to at home or in our businesses and can benefit from broadband and landline packages with 20Mb/s, 100Mb/s and 1Gb/s bandwidth depending on the package. At the time of the press release, there has been at least 50% takeup of these services which I see as being of promise for this kind of service.

Here, this dodges the bullets associated with the metal construction associated with most craft or mobile-broadband plans that are either capped or charged at exorbitant rates.

Using the fibre-to-the-building method of deploying broadband to a marina that has a significant number of people living “on-board” could make for a value-added extra especially in any of the “new shoreline suburbs” cropping up in most of the cities where each of these developments has to have a marina. Tie this with next-generation broadband service plans that are sold “by-the-month” or in a manner that appeals to occasionally-occupied premises and this could appeal to more sailor types.

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Claverton assists BT in providing real broadband to that village

Kennet and Avon Canal near Claverton, Bath, Somerset © Copyright Clive Barry and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons LicenceArticle

UPDATE Tiny Village of Claverton co-Funds BT Fibre Broadband Rollout | ISPReview.co.uk

From the horse’s mouth

Claverton Parish Council

Broadband rollout web page

My Comments

I have previously covered some community efforts that have taken place in the UK to see real broadband Internet be available in various rural villages such as some of the Gigaclear efforts.

But the 115-strong community in Claverton, a Somerset village just a stone’s throw from Bath, have been the first community of its kind to co-fund British Telecom to establish a “fibre-to-the-cabinet” broadband network to cover that village. Here, BT responded with laying 2 kilometres of underground ducting and 4 kilometres worth of overhead and underground fibre-optic cable. This was terminated with 2 new street cabinets with one delivering regular ADSL and telephony services and the other serving as the fibre off-ramp for the next-gen FTTC broadband of up to 80Mbps.

Previously, the broadband service that covered the Claverton community was a joke with bandwidth of less than 1Mbps. This village was one of those communities that would be considered too small for the UK Government’’s “Broadband Delivery UK” programme and of course too small for commercially-viable rollout.

This was about a community that can work together to get something real done about their broadband service, making the village more viable economically. As well, it was about forcing an incumbent carrier like BT to adapt to the needs of a small community. Similarly, the infrastructure that is laid as a result of servicing Claverton can be used as a thoroughfare to service communities that are further out from there.

 

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NBN to raise the bandwidth on wireless-broadband

Article

Tarcutta Halfway Motor Inn

Small rural businesses like this motel will benefit from the increase in bandwidth provided through NBN’s fixed-wireless broadband service

NBN Co to trial faster fixed wireless | IT News

From the horse’s mouth

National Broadband Network

Press Release

My Comments

The National Broadband Network is rolling out to most of rural Australia a fixed-wireless broadband service. This is based around towers scattered around the country areas which provide a radio link to a fixed-wireless modem that is installed at the customer’s premises and connected to their network’s router.

This connection has been rated at 25Mbps for the top-tier broadband offering has now had this bandwidth speed raised to 50Mbps down and 20Mbps up for this same package. It is being offered on a trial basis with the goal of having this improvement available in full production in the fourth quarter of the year. These are typically “headline” link speeds that can be achieved under ideal situations.

The goal is to expose to the rural community the kind of speeds most of us who live in urban areas and have properly-behaving ADSL2+ setups take for granted. This would lead to something that would suit most Internet activities that would benefit these communities, well more than an ADSL service provided using a DSLAM at the exchange that is connected to long-run decrepit telephone infrastructure that seems to be the order of the day for these users.

Personally, I would like to know what real improvement will there be for most country properties when the throughput is increased. But I would see this also making Internet real for people living or working in the country.

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Quality of life becomes another argument to validate rural broadband

Article

Tree on a country property

Local government could also improve the reality of proper broadband in the country

Good Broadband Helps Lift Rutland to Top Halifax’s 50 Best Rural Areas | ISPReview

My Comments

I have given increased coverage to the subject of rural broadband, including implementation of next-generation technologies in the country.

Here I have stood for proper rural broadband due to raising the bar for people who live or work in the country rather than treating them as second-class citizens, something I have experienced with radio, television and telephone. An example of this was a telephone service that was frequently riddled with crosstalk, a radio service with reduced access to music content or a TV service with unreliable reception.

In the UK, the Broadband Delivery UK programme assisted by British Telecom made sure that real broadband passed 98% of the county’s premises courtesy of fibre-to-the-cabinet technology. This was also complemented in some villages with fibre-to-the-premises technology courtesy of Gigaclear and Rutland Telecom. This has been demonstrated as a way to lift the value of the properties in these areas as the quality of broadband service can improve one’s online life.

But real broadband in rural areas has been seen as contributing to an improvement to quality of life in these neighbourhoods, which was highlighted in a Halifax survey that was just published. Halifax factored the quality of broadband service in to this list with a bandwidth of 2Mbps or greater as a positive influence. Here, the Rutland neighbourhood appeared at number 1 thanks to the Gigaclear and BDUK

These figures could be used by local government and citizen groups to substantiate why real competition is important for Internet service and why country areas need real Internet service that is reliable. It can also be used by national governments to define the standard of adequate broadband Internet service and justify having this service covered by a universal-service obligation along with protection of real competition for these services and the provision of public money to set these services up.

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Google Fiber available for all small businesses in Provo and Kansas City

Article – from the horse’s mouth

Google Fiber

Google Fiber for Small Business arrives in Provo (plus more of Kansas City)  – Blog Post

Video – what this means for small business!

My Comments

Those of you who subscribe to Google Fiber in Provo or Kansas City were limited by the fact that the fibre-optic next-generation broadband service was positioned just for residential users. This meant that you couldn’t really link up your home office, small business or community organisation to this service to benefit from real next-generation broadband.

Initially Google ran limited-participation program of their Google Fiber For Small Business service in Kansas City to see whether it would “cut the mustard” for a next-generation broadband service that you could trust your business to. Now they have launched the Google Fiber For Small Business service across their current footprint in Provo, Kansas City and Austin.

This is to provide Gigabit throughput along with a supplied router for USD$100 per month with static IPs at extra cost. I have written an article on this Website about getting your small business ready for whenever Google Fiber passes your doors and you sign up for it. Here, I was highlighting concepts like remote storage and cloud computing; telecommuting; VoIP and video telephony; IP-based video surveillance; and public-access Internet as well as drawing attention to your network equipment being up to the task such as supporting high throughput.

As Google provides competitive next-generation Internet service for small businesses, it could provide a real benefit to the small business’s bottom line when it comes to Internet-access costs and value-for-money.

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Wires-only self Install to come to UK FTTC services

Draytek Vigor 2860N VDSL2 business VPN-endpoint router press image courtesy of Draytek UK

Draytek Vigor 2860N VDSL2 business VPN-endpoint router

Article

Broadband Router Options for UK FTTC VDSL ISPs – 2015 UPDATE – ISPreview UK Page 2

My Comments

When a person signed up to “fibre-to-the-cabinet” next-generation broadband service in the UK, they would have to make an appointment with a BT Openreach technician to install their VDSL2 modem and rewire their telephone service. Here, you then had to make sure you had a broadband router with an Ethernet WAN connection on the “edge” of your home network which is something you would have to do for fibre-to-the-premises (all-fibre) setups.

Now BT and others are offering this service on a “self-install” or “wires-only” basis where they do the work with getting you ready for next-generation broadband at the FTTC cabinet only. You would have to buy your own VDSL2-capable modem router and microfilters to benefit from this service. This is similar to the current practice of providing ADSL in the UK, Australia and most other countries.

There are an increasing number of high-end modem routers available from most of the well-known home-network equipment names like Draytek, Billion, and TP-LINK. But the VDSL2 modem must work to UK standards which means that it would be a good idea to go to local online or bricks-and-mortar outlets to purchase that VDSL2-compliant modem router.

Bear in mind that some high-end ADSL2 modem routers that are advertised as VDSL2-ready may implement a software-programmable modem which can be set up to “do VDSL2”. Here, check on the manufacturer’s Webpage for a firmware update that opens this functionality and make sure this update is “fixed” to UK requirements.

As well, for anyone around the world who is benefiting from VDSL2-based “fibre-copper” services and having it on a “self-install” or wires-only basis, make sure that you are dealing with equipment or firmware that works to the standards supported by your ISP or infrastructure provider.

To start you off, consider the Draytek Vigor 2860N as a flexible VPN endpoint wireless router for your small business or the Billion BiPAC 8800AXL AC1600 wireless router as modem router ideas for your FTTC-driven home or small-business network.

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New York State to raise the bar for US broadband

Article

New York State plots broadband future | The Register

From the horse’s mouth

New York State Government

Governor’s speech (video)

My Comments

The New York State government are taking the bull by the horns to raise the bar for broadband in New York State. This is a regional-government effort to counteract the way that the US broadband Internet service has been going downhill.

This may rattle some “established” cages regarding public funding for projects but they are pitching US$500 million towards public-private broadband-service improvement projects through the state. Here, they want a minimum bandwidth of 100Mbps for most of the state with, in some rural situations, 25Mbps. This is compared to a state average of around 6Mbps.

Albany is also soliciting local input to guide development so they know of unserved or underserved neighbourhoods; aggregate the demand across across business, institutional and residential usage sectors; identify and detail the most cost-effective ways to achieve this universal-access goal along with leveraging their state-owned assets. The goal of identifying the unserved and underserved areas works well also to combat any redlining that is taking place concerning service provision.

Any of the developments that are taking place will be worked to support a “dig once, make ready” policy so that any further work to improve the state’s broadband doesn’t require any further major work that would be costly.

Of course, a lot of these efforts put forward the idea of increased employment and business development in the areas concerned.

But they would need to encourage the provision of competitive broadband by allowing those other than the incumbent telcos or cable-TV firms to lay down infrastructure or provide broadband service to the state’s citizens.

Could this light up New York State for Broadband?

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President Obama speaks out for real competition in US Internet service

Article

Obama’s Plan to Loosen Comcast’s Stranglehold on Your Internet | Gizmodo

From the horse’s mouth

The White House (US Government)

Report (PDF)

Video by Barack Obama

Click to view

My Comments

An issue that is constantly raised in the USA is the lack of real competition when it comes to Internet service provision.

This is because incumbent cable and telephone companies, especially Comcast and Time-Warner Cable, are using their lobbying power to influence state governments to proscribe competing interests like municipal Wi-Fi projects or Google Fiber from setting up infrastructure and service. Similarly, these companies effectively tie up fibre-optic and other backbone infrastructure also to prevent real competition. Here, this leads to an Internet service that simply is poor value-for-money due to prices that go up, reduced bandwidth, onerous terms and conditions and poor quality-of-service.

As illustrated in the video that President Barack Obama made regarding this topic, this limits the available throughput for Internet service and he compared the US situation to cities like Paris, France or Seoul, South Korea where they have the high-speed broadband.

He underscored the role of state and local government to pull their weight to support high-throughput last-mile Internet connections on a competitive level. Uncle Sam had already facilitated the backbone of the US Internet connection but he sees these governments being responsible for the connection to the customer’s door.

It also comes at a time where Comcast and Time-Warner Cable have registered an intent to merge and this is becoming a hot potato issue in the US due to the state of the Internet and pay-TV services that exist there.

One analogy I have used regarding the state of the US Internet service is that it is moving towards a similar standard to monopoly-era telephone service where a single privately-owned or government-owned post-office or telephone company looked after the telephone service. This led to situations like the poor quality of customer service, disinvestment in areas that weren’t considered profitable along with very high prices especially for service-provisioning costs or long-distance calls.

What I have liked about this is that someone “from the top” of the food chain is addressing the issue concerning the quality and value of Internet service in the USA.

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The soil has been turned for fibre-optic Internet in rural Yorkshire

Articles

Yorkshire Dales By Kreuzschnabel (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0), GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or FAL], via Wikimedia Commons

More Yorkshire villages to benefit from real broadband

B4YS Start Rural FTTH Broadband Rollout for Yealand, Silverdale and Storth | ISPReview

B4RN brings fibre to B4YS country | ThinkBroadband

From the horse’s mouth

B4YS

Home Page

My Comments

Real broadband is coming to some parts of rural Yorkshire sooner than you think. Here, the B4RN group who established fibre-optic Internet in some parts of rural Lancashire have cut in to the large Yorkshire county, especially Yealand, Silverdale and Storth because these villages abut Lancashire and Yorkshire.

Here, the B4RN community-funded Internet group have turned the soil for the fibre-optic links and have achieved Stage One funding of GBP£101,000 without need for any state aid. This capital is to establish the core network. This is achieved through shares being sold to local residents and local businesses offering to lend capital to the effort and landowners offering labour towards the effort.

They are using a low-impact mole plough so that the land that the fibre-optic connections pass through isn’t disturbed heavily. Use of private land is totally with the landowner’s permission as it should be and there is encouragement for landowners to help with the work of installing the fibre-optic cable.

They intend to have the first premises connected sometime this year but there have been issues of this requiring the second-stage funding of a similar amount and B4YS are building up that capital. Users benefit from a Gigabit-throughput unlimited broadband service for £30 per month VAT inclusive and a one-off connection fee of £150.

If the B4YS project takes off well when it comes to connections, this could be a chance for this chapter of the B4RN project to work outwards and service more of the North Yorkshire villages, thus creating a force for real broadband Internet in the rural communities there.

But what is being allowed for here in the UK is for local communities and small businesses to deploy fibre-optic broadband to serve these small communities to allow them to benefit from real broadband Internet. This is alongside the BT Openreach service who are establishing fibre-to-the-cabinet broadband Internet in most of the UK and is a way to use competitive services to achieve the same goal.

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Google Fibre breaks the digital divide in one of Austin’s public-housing communities

Article – From the horse’s mouth

Google Fiber

Blog Post

Housing Authority for the City of Austin

Digital Inclusion document (PDF)

My Comments

Lenovo Thinkpad G50-70 Laptop

Google Fiber to enable digital literacy in poorer communities

Google Fiber is participating in a community-based initiative to break the digital divide in the public-housing communities in Austin, Texas as part of their rollout in to that city.

This is a public-private affair in co-operation with the Housing Authority for the City of Austin which is a local-government-run public-housing authority in that city. The main premise of this exercise is that every child to have a chance to succeed in the 21st century global economy, but I also see as being important adults including mature adults and senior citizens who haven’t had much exposure to computing and technology in their school and work life also benefiting.

It is also encompassing training and study in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. As well, the program is also providing access to devices and affordable Internet connectivity in the public-housing districts. For example, Google Fiber is intending to provide for HACA development in their fibre footprint, free basic Internet service for each household for 10 years, with the option to upgrade to the “full-on” Gigabit connection for extra cost.

There is the all-important support for the household’s devices including the necessary digital-literacy training, something that typically is provided on an ad-hoc basis to these households by family and friends and it is being provided by Austin Free-Net.

What I see of this is an attempt by public and private efforts to help poorer communities with access to today’s technology for productive activities and expose people, young and old, to today’s technology. What needs to be underscored in the remit for these programs is that it is not just the children who are intended to benefit but adults, especially mature adults and senior citizens who spent most of their school and work life before the desktop-computer-driven 1980s, who need to become technologically literate. As well, the remit to help with computer literacy for older generations cuts across all social classes.

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