List: Patrick Duckworth, Marketing Manager at intechnologyWiFi, looks at his top five innovative solutions for poor Internet connectivity.
We’ve all had ‘the fear’ when we find ourselves disconnected.
From super-slow broadband to mobile not-spots, poor connectivity goes beyond being a nuisance to impacting our lives as we become increasingly dependent on connected devices to work, socialise or even just to find our way home on Google Maps.
Desperate times call for desperate measures. And to overcome these connectivity issues, people are coming up with some innovative solutions.
Here we salute these connectivity heroes as we share our top five extreme things Brits will do for connectivity.
1) Woolly WiFi wanderers
You can’t take an amble in the countryside without someone bleating about their lack of signal. And it doesn’t just give the residents a headache. With climbers and hillwalkers frequently relying on smartphones to navigate their way across hill and dale, mountain rescue teams are getting a record number of call-outs as mobile GPS services fail them.
But scientists from Bangor and Lancaster universities aren’t sheepish in pitching big solutions to connecting the countryside. These scientists are even fitting sheep with connected collars. Not only will this help provide useful information on anything from tracking animal locations and soil quality, but they’ll also be able to turn these sheep into roaming hotspots. Not a baaaarmy idea.
2) A spiritual connection
Priests and church leaders often go above and beyond for their parishes – supporting them in their hour of need. But what do you do when they just need a decent Internet connection?
In Somerset, many knew it’d take a miracle for superfast broadband to reach their small villages. So they took matters into their own hands, installing on the tallest tower of Ely Cathedral an array of radio transmitters connected to fibreoptic broadband. With the signally reaching villagers as far as 10 miles away, finally their prayers have been answered.
3) The Internet’s hay-day
Farmer Richard Guy’s broadband connection had always been a swine, so he was pleasantly surprised when he discovered that his mobile 4G signal was significantly faster.
Determined to harness these super-fast speeds at home, he set about building his very own 4G adaptor which he connected with fibre-optic cables to his home. He’s now enjoying super-fast broadband speeds at home and reaping the benefits.
4) Sky-High Speeds
Speeding through innumerable not-spots has led to a constant drone of commuters whining about the patchy mobile network coverage on trains. And rail providers seemed to be fighting a losing battle in ensuring a decent quality of signal.
One suggestion of WiFi emitting drones following the trains has the rail providers and commuters abuzz. Whilst likely to be a much smaller device than those more famously to be deployed by Facebook, the improved connection is sure to allow high fliers to get a little more work done on the move.
5) Digging for victory
Residents of the small town of Dolphinholme, Lancashire, were in the trenches as they fought with BT to lay down superfast broadband cables to their town. As they battled against web speeds that could take up to several minutes to load, they decided it was time to roll up their sleeves and tackled the issue themselves.
The town called in the troops, and community volunteers began digging their own trenches and laid down superfast broadband cables connecting every property. The town is now liberated from its poor connectivity and boasts one of the fastest networks in the UK.
If you doubted it before, these examples show there’s no question that Internet access is essential for both work and play. Areas struggling with Internet connectivity must now look for innovative and practical solutions that ensure that no one is left disconnected.
These quite unusual stories don’t mean that every town needs to lay its own broadband cables or individuals should start building their own phone signal mast. Communities struggling with their connectivity, instead, should look to open-WiFi solutions to address their connectivity issues.
At no cost for the councils or users at any time in the lifespan of the service – these networks not only enable individual use, but also allows for the broad revenue-generating opportunities that connectivity brings to town and city economies.
All without any extreme measures.