What are my options to access the internet if I live in a remote area?

I heard this being discussed on Marian Finucane.

One of the pro rural broadband guys said 1m people in Ireland were using dongles.

He lived in Meath or Longford and claimed that his niece stayed with them for a few days, and the next bill they received was for €900.

Presumably anyone in the country who can get a phone signal can access the internet relatively cheaply? It might not be very fast and they might not be able to play games, but they can do the basics. And presumably they can subscribe to some form of phone service which has all you can eat data or one that cuts off after they have used up their allowance?

One of the guys was a farmer and wants to set up an online shop selling cut flowers from his farm directly. Fair enough, but he should pay for this. I don't see why I should pay for running a cable all the way to his farm.

And do all towns over say, 1000 households have broadband? Presumably it is commercially viable to supply them, but not commercially viable to extend the cable up the side of a mountain.

Brendan
 

PaddyBloggit

Frequent Poster
I use a dongle when I'm at my holiday home - Pay as You Go. It suits me just to read email, read the news and be abusive on AAM! ;)

At home, I ditched eir(com) and I have wireless: a small dish on my chimney and it gives me all that I need. I have a landline number via wireless also, all for €49.00 per month. The phone package gives me 1,000 minutes of calls per month - more than I ever use with my landline.
 

NoRegretsCoyote

Frequent Poster
I don't live in a rural area and rarely go there.

You hear a lot of wild claims about how poor the broadband is. Much of this is self-interested so I'm never sure how much to take seriously given its self-interest at play.

I don't have much sympathy for people in rural areas who just want streaming media.

I have a bit of sympathy for businesses. But most businesses actually just need email, a website, a landline, etc. This doesn't necessitate high bandwith and/or low latency.


The economics are incredibly different in Ireland due to rural settlement patterns. In most of northern Europe, rural dwelling isn't one-off houses in the countryside, instead its small clusters of houses on main at or near the intersections of main roads. For obvious reasons this much easier to supply all sorts of utilities to.
 

odyssey06

Frequent Poster
Either you dont have a house full of teenagers, or you are not very sympathetic.
Negative sympathy. I want a 5 bed detached house in Dublin. Not gonna get it. You want better broadband? Move. You chose to live in remote area. What do you expect?

Or wait ten years for satellite broadband.
 

Monbretia

Frequent Poster
Part of the problem is you don't actually have to be in a remote area to have the problem, was it that same programme or another I heard that another guy said he was 40 km from Dublin and had no decent wifi?

My brother lives 20 km outside a pretty big town and he cannot get a working broadband, it's not what I would call remote, main road in a busy tourist area. He has a dongle but the phone reception is poor too so he ends up driving his kids down to the local pier where the reception is better so they can look up stuff for school. My father who lives close by cannot even operate a mobile in his house, you have to go into the porch to get any signal.

Now I haven't a clue what the solution is but I don't believe it's limited to what I would call remote areas. On the other hand I have fibre outside my garden wall but can't be installed because the installers did not shove the pipe or whatever for the cable from the cabinet far enough into my site, they pushed it in about 2 feet to my side but I have a large hedge at least 6 ft thick of trees so it cannot be accessed. They should be able to bring it in along the electricity cable but that can't be done either.
 

Andrew Murphy

Frequent Poster
In the wilderness of West Cork we connect via a broadband dongle. Mobile coverage is reasonably good so we have the option to use Vodafone, Eir or Three. I am with Three at the moment but don't get the speeds to make any meaningful dent in the unlimited download package.

Imagine.ie are currently installing fixed broadband throughout the area so hopefully we won't have to wait too long to get hooked up to a decent Internet connection.
 

Purple

Frequent Poster
If we want proper balanced regional development in the country we need to have national broadband access for every city, town and village.


What we should not even attempt to do is run fibre to every house in the country. If you live in a house running along a road outside a village (ribbon development) then the State should not pay for your broadband access. Ribbon development is one of the numerous results of the bad planning which has plagued our country for decades. People simply should not be allowed to build houses down every laneway and boreen in the country. It is killing rural Ireland as much as anything else. So, if you want your McMansion for €350,000 then you can’t expect the same access to Broadband or hospitals or other services that people in urban areas enjoy. They get a small apartment for the price of your house so suck it up.
 

Ceist Beag

Frequent Poster
If we want proper balanced regional development in the country we need to have national broadband access for every city, town and village.


What we should not even attempt to do is run fibre to every house in the country. If you live in a house running along a road outside a village (ribbon development) then the State should not pay for your broadband access. Ribbon development is one of the numerous results of the bad planning which has plagued our country for decades. People simply should not be allowed to build houses down every laneway and boreen in the country. It is killing rural Ireland as much as anything else. So, if you want your McMansion for €350,000 then you can’t expect the same access to Broadband or hospitals or other services that people in urban areas enjoy. They get a small apartment for the price of your house so suck it up.
I would agree with a lot of this. This is the stance taken for other main services, such as sewerage, water, etc. so I don't see why it should be any different for broadband. If you're on the main line for other services then I would expect that you could access fibre broadband, if not then you should have to make your own arrangements.
 

John Locke

Registered User
One of the guys was a farmer and wants to set up an online shop selling cut flowers from his farm directly. Fair enough, but he should pay for this.
I heard this too, I don't know why he thought he needs a fibre connection for this. He would not be hosting his own website, the speed of his connection is irrelevant. He mustn't have spent any time researching this and is probably not serious about setting up an online shop.

was it that same programme or another I heard that another guy said he was 40 km from Dublin and had no decent wifi?
I'm pretty sure it was the same guy. He had wireless broadband. He told us it was fast enough to stream netflix, his gripe was that his neice exceeded the 15GB limit and ran up a €900 bill. The problem here isn't the speed of the connection, it's the contract he was on. If it's fast enough for netflix, it's plenty fast for any business uses he might have.

It's a pity that they couldn't have got some people on with some knowledge on the technology to participate in the debate. Instead you had people telling us that the wifi was good in one room, but not another, as if this is in any way relevant to the NBP.

My take, run fixed broadband to towns/villages. Wireless for the rest. If you want fixed broadband in a non town/village location, pay a connection fee, like for electricity. This can be capped/subsidised, but at least we won't be running fibre to locations where nobody needs it.
 

galway_blow_in

Frequent Poster
I heard this being discussed on Marian Finucane.

One of the pro rural broadband guys said 1m people in Ireland were using dongles.

He lived in Meath or Longford and claimed that his niece stayed with them for a few days, and the next bill they received was for €900.

Presumably anyone in the country who can get a phone signal can access the internet relatively cheaply? It might not be very fast and they might not be able to play games, but they can do the basics. And presumably they can subscribe to some form of phone service which has all you can eat data or one that cuts off after they have used up their allowance?

One of the guys was a farmer and wants to set up an online shop selling cut flowers from his farm directly. Fair enough, but he should pay for this. I don't see why I should pay for running a cable all the way to his farm.

And do all towns over say, 1000 households have broadband? Presumably it is commercially viable to supply them, but not commercially viable to extend the cable up the side of a mountain.

Brendan
My mother lives in a very rural part of meath and has broadband since 2004
 

Leo

Moderator
For this there is satellite broadband. The latency is poor and it's expensive, but you will get the bandwidth.
There are a number of players rolling out low earth orbit satellite networks, these will offer global while bringing the latency down to fibre like levels. These will be up and running while we're still pumping massive money into the NBP. A single SpaceX launch in the next few days is carrying 60 such satlites for the StarLink network.
 
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