Thursday, March 22, 2007

Aussies and Kiwis sampling Dutch broadband (9)

When you think about Australia and New-Zealand you think about cities and farming, especially with the New Zealand lambs. Talking about broadband, you start wondering how the Aussies and Kiwis tackle such a problem. Are they going to upgrade the fixed line to the farm or are they going to roll-out fibre to the farm (FttF). Of course they also could think of wireless or combinations of fixed line networks and wireless, while WIMAX is still in the wings.

The subject was not treated in one of the presentations, but Mr Jaap van Till, professor at Amsterdam University mentioned that his students were studying the development of a farmers’ network. They have been busy doing inventories. They met great enthusiasm not just with the farmers, but also with entrepreneurs who have remodelled the farm houses to recreation farms or shops and consultancies. The need for broadband is as great as in cities.

However, there are practical problems with laying fibre networks to the farms. The distance from the major backbones will make it costly connections as digging has to be done over a long distance. But one of the suggestions from the farmers is that they start digging the trenches themselves. They have the digging equipment and the experience. Besides in woody areas one of the solutions is to lay fibre through the Trees (FttT).

The project Fibre to the Farm has not been launched officially yet; it is still under study. But the prospects look good.

Blog Posting Number: 700

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