IrelandOffline Quarterly Report Q1 2012 (PR)

IrelandOffline Quarterly Report Q1 2012 (PR)
The highlights of our report are that Ireland has the second highest cost per Megabit of data in the EU and by rather a long way we pay way above the average across the globe.

We are stagnant in terms of upload and download speeds, however the likes of Bulgaria,Moldova,Belarus,Romania, Zimbabwe and Nigeria are still ahead of us for download speeds and we are battling to stay ahead of Laos in terms of upload speeds. We are 74th in the world for upload speeds with Libya, a country with no government, catching us up fast.

Eamonn Wallace, Chairman of IrelandOffline said :”nothing much has happened on the quality front in over a year, we still languish mid-table and with the fine election promises fading out into the distance as the government does nothing…except talk and consult as ever. We always seem to be one consultation short of doing something constructive”

Wallace continued:”The Urban-Rural divide continues to expand exponentially, rural dwellers are being left behind with no action being taken to address this divide, and where recent regulatory decisions are unlikely to address the matter. The reliance on 3G as a solution is clearly flawed. Any potential LTE solution is being mis-regulated out to the margins. Bandwidth (spectrum) is like a pipe, the more bandwidth the higher the speeds can be delivered over the “pipe”.  The norm in most jurisdictions is for 20Mhz wide channels through allocation and sharing, however Comreg, want minuscule 5Mhz channels for LTE and will not permit RAN Sharing.

This fragmented spectrum will only allow LTE to deliver similar performance to 3G today, without the worst of the the cell sector disappearing (shrinking) effect at night. The only solution, in rural areas, is to mandate one provider to build the infrastructure and all other mobile providers can then use this infrastructure. This policy should deliver something akin to a modern broadband service for rural dwellers. This sharing solution is  known as RAN Sharing and is an urgent requirement in most of Ireland right now.”

Wallace went on : “There are some positive signs on the telecommunications front with the limited rollout of Fibre to the Cabinet commencing in 10 areas. These limited roll-outs simply aren’t enough, vast swathes of consumers and the country are still on dialup or on GSM EDGE..

Wallace added : “It is frankly insulting to peddle ourselves as the “Internet capital of the world”  only inside the M50 when people merely 30 miles away have no viable choice other than dialup or third world satellite solutions. Our solution seems to be it’s ok for them as long as we don’t have to do anything. The Infrastructure in some areas is so weak that we have no hope of making the EU 2020 target of MINIMUM 30mbit Broadband speeds for all citizens.

Eircom should at a minimum finish the DSL rollout programme they started in April 2007 before starting another rollout with up to 250 exchanges still not enabled for basic DSL yet.”
Figures from Comreg released today show that there are up to 25,000 Contract dialup customers scattered around the country together with many more occasional dialup users who are not officially counted.”

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