Reply to post: Wifi/Wireless/Mobile is not the answer!

UK.gov calls on the Big Man – GOD – to boost rural broadband

Duncan Robertson

Wifi/Wireless/Mobile is not the answer!

Having lived in rural Aberdeenshire during the broadband revolution, I can honestly say that any sort of wireless connectivity is not the answer. Neither is satellite! I campaigned for Broadband 15 years ago here and the Mesh Radio type of setup was the only feasible solution, however still required the expensive Leased Line option for backhaul. Few rural exchanges are enabled for EFM or Leased Lines, from what I gather.

There are too many factors which affect both the ability to connect and the speed/bandwidth available, where mobile/wireless is concerned. I am not going to list them here, just accept it. However, I can go round a corner in my car and lose all mobile signal for a couple of miles because there's a 3000ft mountain in the way.

What needs to be done is to address the issue of Exchange Only (EO) lines and also replace the cheap Aluminium lines with copper/fibre. EO lines are a huge problem in Aberdeenshire. Apparently 46% of lines are EO lines, according to Digital Scotland. In my own village the majority of the population are directly connected to the exchange. Now, whilst this is great for stability and also speed (I enjoy 20Mb/s), the limiting factor for me is the upload of 1Mb/s, due to a couple of servers I run.

So, instead of pursuing ever faster and faster speeds, please OpenReach, concentrate on fibre-ing up the whole country, not just 98% of the population.

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