Author Topic: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!  (Read 19560 times)

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Russell Brown

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Hah! High Speed Broadband eh? it's like buses... no hope for ages and then two possibilities come along at the same time.

Firstly, NCC/ENC have been given some more public funding to push high(ish) speed broadband out to the rural hinterlands (or beyond the inner-cities as I prefer to view it). This has moved Kings Cliffe from "not a clue what's happening ask us again in a few years time" status to "we'll do a survey to see if it's possible". That's got to be good news.

Secondly, a company called Gigaclear have contacted the PC saying that we (Cliffe) 'fit' their typical rural profile to which they provide fibre optic internet access (broadband on steroids and potentially much much faster than the NCC/ENC/BT offering). They've already done/are doing villages around Peterborough and apparently just received a whole lot of venture capital investment that should let them expand their coverage.

I'm trying to ge some more information from them and will post whatever I find out here but in the meantime they've booked the Kings Cliffe Memorial  Hall on Tues 5th Aug (7.30pm) for a presentation and Q&A session.

Hopefully more info tomorrow but their website's worth a look to get an idea of options and prices.
« Last Edit: 27 Jul 2014, 10:16:05 by Russell Brown »

Russell Brown

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe?
« Reply #1 Posted: 23 Jul 2014, 12:22:51 »
I've had a chat with Ben Ramsden, the chap from Gigaclear, about what they're doing/proposing and things become a little clearer.

Basically they will install fibre optic throughout the village with a connection point outside every house if there is enough interest.

The 'enough interest' is the major point in the above; they're looking for a 30% uptake to make 'fibreing-up' Kings Cliffe viable.

Not everyone has to join up with Gigaclear in the first instance; as the access points will all be in place, folk can connect at a later stage.  Of course if the 30% uptake isn't reached within a set timeframe, six months was mentioned, then there won't be a later stage for anyone to sign up to as Gigaclear will, understandably, move their attentions elsewhere :(

Costs are on their website but the important numbers are £100 to sign up and then £37 per month for the 50Mb download/50Mb upload service (physical installation in a house has a cost of £95 if you use Gigclear's contractors or you can DIY for free).

Comparisons with BT Infinity or suchlike (Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC)) are a bit difficult as it isn't the same thing and there is still no certainty whatsoever that we'll get it (all we've been promised so far is a survey at some undefined point in the future to see if it's possible).

Infinity/FTTC and normal broadband both suffer from speed decreases based on your distance from the connection point. It's difficult to say without accurate surveys how much of a slowdown there could be but from the information on BT's website it's not unreasonable to estimate that FTTC is only likely to provide 20Mb download/2Mpbs upload to parts of the village. That's not a whole lot better than normal broadband.

Gigaclear on the other hand are offering Fibre to the Premises (FTTP sometimes called FTTH - Fibre to the Home) which means every connection will get the stated speed with no distance related slowdown as it's all fibre with no cheap'n'nasty copper wires involved.

For business users (or households with teenagers!  ;D), there's also the option of much faster speeds than 50Mb with the Gigaclear option. They offer anything up to 10,000Mbs (yes ten thousand) if you're willing to pay for it! A more sensible option for business users might be in the 250-500Mbs area (BT only offer 330Mbs in the handful of FTTP trial areas they're running and there's naff all chance of that coming to Cliffe in my lifetime).

As you might be able to tell I'm quite enthusiastic about the prospect of Kings Cliffe having the same sort of top notch broadband option that one only finds today in British city centres (or most of south Korea!).

I'll be signing up (there's nothing to pay if the service is not delivered). All we need now to get Kings Cliffe Fibred-up is 184 others to do likewise :)

I urge everyone to come along to the meeting at the Village Hall (the Kings Cliffe Memorial Hall to use its Sunday best name) on the 5th of August at 19:30 to hear what Gigclear have to say.

Russell Brown

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe?
« Reply #2 Posted: 23 Jul 2014, 13:10:47 »
If anyone's still awake... some more numbers that Google dug up for me.

Possibly of interest to business or 'very heavy' internet users:

BT FTTP on Demand is 330Mb download/30Mb upload. Recent prices rises make it £750 install plus £3.50 per metre then £99 per month (note: we can't get this service in Kings Cliffe). A dedicated 100Mb fibre from BT costs £1,000 per month plus £25,000 installation fee.

Gigaclear 1000Mb service (1000Mb download and upload) is £195 install then £69 per month.

Going down a notch, the Gigaclear 200Mb service is £49 per month.

That seems to compare very favourably with BT.

Russell Brown

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe?
« Reply #3 Posted: 23 Jul 2014, 13:21:27 »
...and some numbers for normal people (not business users) published on the Marholm Village Website (Marholm are getting BT FTTC installed this year but there still seems to be strong support for getting Gigaclear's FTTP service as well; recognising that it's a superior and more future proof offering).

Quote
The cost comparison is also interesting. Although the cheapest service from Gigaclear may look expensive at £37/mo, it makes much more sense if you pay an extra £6/mo to include your phone service with unlimited UK landline calls, inclusive of all of the features for which BT charge extra. The nearest unlimited high speed broadband service from BT costs £26/mo (after the introductory offers end), plus £15.99/mo line rental, plus £7.50/mo for unlimited landline calls – a total of £49.49/mo for a service costing £43/mo from Gigaclear which includes many more features, much faster upload speeds and the capability for much, much higher speed should you ever need it.

n

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe?
« Reply #4 Posted: 23 Jul 2014, 13:56:51 »
This sounds really interesting, I use skype at lot, and the odd bit of internet shopping but I have to say the reception is not great so I will definitely try to be at the meeting.
Thanks Russell

Ben Ramsden

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #5 Posted: 24 Jul 2014, 09:11:52 »
Gigaclear – you can sign-up now. 
Thank you for Russell Brown’s kind introduction and overview.  Whilst I like his analogy to buses, I prefer, in broadband speed terms, the idea of a (BT) bus and a (Gigaclear) Ferrari!  David & Goliath may also be apt. 

Over the next day or so I hope that Kings Cliffe and Apethorpe residents will begin to spot various Gigaclear posters distributed across the two villages.  Gigaclear is very aware that to date our publicity has been pretty well non-existent, and I aim to address that.  General Gigaclear posters should be spotted at the entrance to both villages.  In addition, posters will also be going up to highlight the Kings Cliffe Memorial Hall Community Meeting on Tues 5th Aug., starting at 7.30pm.   

Gigaclear itself is very aware that further information is needed by residents to reach an informed decision.  The Village Meeting will be a perfect opportunity to understand the Gigaclear solution and its relative merits.  I have been recruited as a local Gigaclear, Northants based representative.  I can be contacted at ben.ramsden@gigaclear.com.  In addition, Gigaclear is seeking the support of the local communities to collectively inform their friends and neighbours of the Gigaclear service. 

Russell Brown has written about the need to reach a 30% sign-up figure across the two villages for us to make the significant investment of digging fibre to each and every property.  I will elaborate on that at the Village Meeting.  Where residents are in an existing contract, so long as that has less than 12 months remaining to run, we will take your order and count it towards the 30% - we will not of course take any money from you until the service is installed, tested and working. 

The Gigaclear experience is that a number of questions arise about the difference between any proposed BT service and Gigaclear.  A Helpston, Cambs resident has posted the following comment on the Marholm Cambs Village web site, going into just that – Russell has posted an extract already, but it is worth reiterating.  The Peterborough Vale is another community where we are proposing to build. 

“It is important to note that these (BT and Gigaclear) services are different although the costs are very similar. 

BT's service is Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC). It uses a Fibre cable from the main telephone exchange to the local cabinet (the green box in most villages) and then from the cabinet it uses 30 year old copper cable to connect the service to your property. The speed you receive degrades over distance using the copper cable. Anything over 1km and it drops off dramatically. This cable does not go the way the crow flies so can be longer than you think. For those who wish to understand that better, here is a diagram that shows how the distance away from the cabinet affects your speed www.broadbandspeedchecker.co.uk/guides/adsl_and_distance.aspx. This is why BT cannot guarantee you a speed - you never really get what you pay for. It also is affected by contention, i.e. at 4pm when the kids go online most people experience a drop in speed as too many people are using the service.
Gigaclear's service is Fibre to your House (FTTH), this is a fibre optic cable directly into your property. It is a guaranteed speed UP and DOWN (i.e. 50Mb download and 50Mb upload) at all times of the day. Higher speeds are available today for those that wish or need it.  The service is future proof and can scale easily beyond the current 1000Mbps if needed in the future. BT's cannot do this, it will need another major overhaul of their network to achieve that at the cost of millions of pounds.

The cost comparison is also interesting. Although the cheapest service from Gigaclear may look expensive at £37/mo, it makes much more sense if you pay an extra £6/mo to include your phone service with unlimited UK landline calls, inclusive of all of the features for which BT charge extra. The nearest unlimited high speed broadband service from BT costs £26/mo (after the introductory offers end), plus £15.99/mo line rental, plus £7.50/mo for unlimited landline calls – a total of £49.49/mo for a service costing £43/mo from Gigaclear which includes many more features, much faster upload speeds and the capability for much, much higher speed should you ever need it.”
 
Just to correct one of two points made by Russell.  Our fastest package is 1,000Mbps, not the 10,000Mbps suggested.  The core network is 10,000Mbps (or 10Gbps), to ensure the capacity to each and every end customer.  And finally, Mimi’s post highlights just one or two of the many applications – Skype and on-line shopping – we are coming to expect today, if we had a half decent broadband.  Catch-up TV (iPlayer and such like), gaming, Cloud computing for businesses, fast upload as well as download emailing etc..  All of the indications are those trends are set to gather further pace.  On-line healthcare appears to be emerging a new application. 

I hope as many as possible, from Kings Cliffe and Apethorpe are able to attend the 5th Aug meeting, and to help spread the word thereafter. 
More information is available at www.gigaclear.com
« Last Edit: 24 Jul 2014, 13:09:56 by Russell Brown »

Russell Brown

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #6 Posted: 24 Jul 2014, 09:33:46 »
Just to correct one of two points made by Russell.  Our fastest package is 1,000Mbps, not the 10,000Mbps suggested.

Ahem.... 10Gb (10,000Mbps) is listed in your pricelist on the business products page. OK so it costs £19,990 per month  :o  which is probably a tad too much for even the more affluent Cliffie but it is advertised as available.
« Last Edit: 24 Jul 2014, 09:34:43 by Russell Brown »

Madcatlady

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #7 Posted: 24 Jul 2014, 10:03:43 »
Due to our intense dislike of BT and their insistence that we have to have a landline with Broadband we are currently on wireless with Three. It's all in Unlimited with calls etc. and runs at a whopping 1-2mbps so we will therefore defiantly be at the August meeting.

dmilford

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #8 Posted: 24 Jul 2014, 11:38:40 »
Can you confirm the date of the meeting?

It's noted here as Tuesday 5th August, but on http://www.gigaclear.com/communities/kingscliffe/ it's Wednesday 6th August.

Russell Brown

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #9 Posted: 24 Jul 2014, 12:52:58 »
Someone did a typo on their website, now corrected.

I've confirmed that the meeting is on Tuesday the 5th of August at 19:30 (7.30pm for traditionalists  :D) at the Village Hall.
« Last Edit: 24 Jul 2014, 13:10:49 by Russell Brown »

n

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #10 Posted: 25 Jul 2014, 13:30:26 »
Err this is getting a bit technical for me,  I don't really understand much from the previous posts, is it worth me coming to the meeting, only knowing the basics will I understand what's going on, because I will not be signing up to anything I don't understand.

Russell Brown

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #11 Posted: 25 Jul 2014, 14:14:02 »
Err this is getting a bit technical for me,  I don't really understand much from the previous posts, is it worth me coming to the meeting, only knowing the basics will I understand what's going on, because I will not be signing up to anything I don't understand.

Sorry Mimi  :-[   It's easy for techies to get drawn into stuff that'll bore the pants off a normal person.

I've split the techie stuff into another thread and I'll try to keep my postings here non-technical. Can other folk do likewise please.

It's my understanding that the meeting at the Village hall isn't going to be at all 'techie' and I'm sure you won't be wasting your time.
« Last Edit: 25 Jul 2014, 15:16:53 by Russell Brown »

wildplaces

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #12 Posted: 25 Jul 2014, 15:22:27 »
Hi Russell

Just out of interest, have you looked at the satellite option ?
The packages look like around 20mb for £300 up front and £35 a month. Not as quick as Gigaclear, and more up front, but on paper (Firefox) looks like a reasonable option?

Not been here long enough to sort out a serious connection yet - we get around 5mb off plusnet, which is okay for most things - kids long gone :). However, a significant leap in speed would be of definite interest. Might even start a business ;)

Looks like Gigaclear can include the phone which is good. Does it work during a power cut?

I'm seeing my Dad in Lyddington at the weekend. I'll see if he has any info on Gigaclear, as 'Rutland Telecom' are providing service there, and they are a 'Gigaclear Company'

Charles


« Last Edit: 25 Jul 2014, 15:23:00 by wildviews »

wildplaces

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #13 Posted: 25 Jul 2014, 15:34:22 »
Question for Ben - can you confirm that all the prices quotes include VAT. Looked around your site but couldn't see it specified....

Also, I note your pricing clause
"8.2  The Company can increase prices of all monthly and annually billed services by up to RPI+2% in January each year.  Notification of the pricing changes shall be provided at least 30 days in advance.  Customers who do not wish to maintain their contract are entitled to cancel their contract up to 30 days prior to the price increase taking effect."

Looks like you can inflict a price rise of RPI+% 30 days in advance, allowing users a whole day to cancel (whoop). Tell me that's not true?

Charles

Russell Brown

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Re: High Speed Internet Access (aka broadband) for Kings Cliffe!
« Reply #14 Posted: 25 Jul 2014, 16:12:54 »
Hi Russell
Just out of interest, have you looked at the satellite option ?

I've looked and dismissed it. Satellite is very asymmetric (Techie Alert! much slower to upload than download) and has awful latency (Techie alert! latency is basically the time it takes to get a signal from A to B; think of a transatlantic phone call - there's a distinct time lag between you saying something and the other party hearing it. That's latency).

For me, upload is as important as download as latency - hence liking Gigaclear as it's a symmetric service (Techie Alert!same speed download and upload) and the quoted latency is very good.