Broadband ISP Solutions for Remote and Rural UK Communities - Current and Future Solutions Page 5 - ISPreview
Broadband Solutions for Remote and Rural UK Communities
By: Mark Jackson - September 20th, 2010 : Page 5 -of- 8
"Mercifully politicians have finally recognised the vital importance of access to a fast and reliable broadband service"

Furthermore all satellites suffer from high latency/pings. This delay will not generally impact basic internet tasks like website browsing and email, although it will make fast-paced multiplayer gaming virtually impossible and can have a significantly negative impact on other real-time delay-sensitive applications like internet voice services (Skype) and Virtual Private Networking (VPN).

Satellite's have a lot of drawbacks but they're a good quick-fix solution, for basic access, at least until something better comes along. Check out our Broadband Satellite ISP Listings and Broadband Satellite Technology pages for more detail.

4. Look for a Fixed Wireless (WISP/FWISP)

Wi-Fi Logo Some lucky areas may find that they are within reach of a pure fixed wireless (Wi-Fi/WiMAX) provider. Many such services offer prices, speed and flexibility that are not a million miles from what fixed line ISPs tend to promote; this is variable between different providers. Check out our Fixed Wireless Broadband ISP List for some examples and our related Wireless Broadband Technology page for further details.

In fact the only real drawback to such a service is their niche coverage, which is usually due to issues of cost, spectrum licensing and topography (invisible wireless radio spectrum doesn't play well with hills and forested areas). Fixed wireless solutions also require a high-bandwidth backhaul, which can still be expensive to deliver. Some community projects will use Satellite as an alternative supply but, as explained for no.3 above, that can have significant drawbacks.

The growing dominance of Mobile Broadband has also taken a bite out of fixed wireless alternatives, making them less viable. In short, a true FWISP (with no satellite backhaul) is a good option but most people will simply not live near to one.

Future Solutions

Mercifully politicians have finally recognised the vital importance of access to a fast and reliable broadband service. As a result plans are now underway that will support the rollout of "super-fast" internet access services to the "Final Third" of homes and businesses; areas unlikely to be covered by private investment (e.g. rural villages). In addition the government wants to make a minimum broadband speed of at least 2Mbps available to everybody in the UK by 2015.

At this stage it remains unclear exactly how the government intends to spend the £200m-300m that has been set aside to aid such rollouts, with more cash potentially coming from future BBC TV Licence fee contributions (3.5% Digital Switchover Budget) after 2012. Sadly politicians are pass masters at wasting millions from the public purse on unnecessary reports and red tape.

In addition many Communication Providers (CP) were recently shocked to learn that a vital review of the controversial Fibre Tax, which is unbalanced and makes it ridiculously expensive for small providers to deliver fibre optic broadband into isolated rural areas, had been cancelled (here). It goes without saying that some trust in the new government to deliver upon its promises has now been lost.

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