Options for fast home internet where broadband coverage is very poor...

Found 28th Jun 2018Edited by:"WaxMechaniK"
Hi there, my sister and her kids live in a lovely residential area, but unfortunately despite there being broadband, the max speed is 4mb, although it barely even reaches that. Herself and 3 kids are all regular and heavy internet users so it's a real issue for them at the moment and I'm not sure what alternative options there are, can anyone advise?

She has broadband with Sky and Virgin cannot be installed in her area. Sky have advised herself and all other neighbours that 4mb is the max speed achievable there.

Would mobile broadband be an option somehow? Of course they would be looking at using a lot of GB's worth of data every month (heavy video streaming and online gaming every day). The maximum I've seen is 50GB per month and I'm not sure that's enough.

Thanks in advance for any advice!
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If it's 4mb it's 4mb nothing much you can do.

Mobile data will work out damned expensive if they are heavy users, my house rattles through 1-1.5TB per month plus you wouldn't be able to provide enough bandwidth.

Until they upgrade your exchange to fibre you're a bit stuck
Look into satellite broadband with a view to sharing with neighbours.

Just as an example: avonlinebroadband.com

You'd need to look about, the price seems reasonable, but the download caps don't seem to have improved much over that last couple of years.
Edited by: "ibblackberry1" 28th Jun 2018
Hey. Similar thing happened to me, but thank the lord, fibre finally came. It should for you too!
You can try mobile data, I used three at the time, and they had unlimited tethering! Not anymore, so you can try check your usage and see how much GB you'll need, then you'll figure out which plan to get.
Also, you must check this website, and see if fibre broadband is coming. I used to check this weekly!


Hope everything works out
How old is the faceplate on your phone line?
If it's really old then a iplate can help boost the speed, free if an engineer comes out or about a tenner to buy and self install.

Depending on where you are radio internet might be an option and quicker.

It's worth seeing if your router has QoS options as it will help make the most of an old connection.
Edited by: "joedastudd" 28th Jun 2018
Wouldn’t bother with mobile broadband I’ve got it with 3 100gb a month and I’m constantly watching the data, can’t even play online for to long, can’t wait till my contract is up.
Have a look around for any community broadband projects in the area, pretty sure the goverment has schemes for it
At that speed she is on ADSL, is fibre available at teh exchange? FTTC
Check local situation here:

Also how far away is the nearest decent broadband? For a while my parents used a wireless link to my brother for internet - both live in the same town and cable was available in some parts and not others.
edit - just to say not a wifi link but one of the radio things I think they picked up a couple of ubiquiti radio bridge units on ebay.

sat broadband is a last resort - high latency and low quotas.
Edited by: "mas99" 29th Jun 2018
Thanks for everyone's replies I appreciate it

So mobile broadband is out of the question then. Satellite internet sounds interesting although I don't know much about it.

I'm going to do a deep check of the current state of fibre in the area again, just in case I missed anything. I'm sure the last time we spoke to Sky, they said our house was just slightly out of range compared to all the others...
Geostationary satellite internet uses satellites a long way a way (tens of thousands of kilometers) and as such has very long ping times (a third of a second or more) so it's totally useless for a rapid real time activity like online gaming.

There are low orbit satellites that are a couple of thousand kilometers away but while there's interest in them for the future, current services using them are very expensive.

You should look for local ISPs as they'll be your best hope to get something in the short term.

There's a 10Mbps universal service obligation coming into force in 2020 so at that point you'll be able to request from certain ISPs that infrastructure to put in place to get you at least that speed, it's looking like BT will be the main ISP at this point but I believe Ofcom are still finalising the details.

It sounds like in your case you're just missing FTTC to your local cabinet so it's likely that would be installed, if it hasn't already by that point (they're intending to halve the number of premises without it in the next couple of years).

The USO does only require 200ms ping times and a 100GB data cap though, so if FTTC isn't viable you could potentially still get a service that isn't as good as you'd prefer.
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