Still on Dialup

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Twenty years later?

Your broadcast and recent news of the Network New Hampshire initiative echo issues that are twenty years old. In the early 1990's, UNH was hosting at least two statewide networks: Mentor, for New Hampshire educators; and NHnet, created by a statewide task force under Governor Judd Greg for all citizens and businesses.
It's disappointing to hear so many of our citizens still need dialup to be part of the Internet. The seeds of opportunity were there twenty years ago.

As the owner of a technology

As the owner of a technology business and former resident of a Town that has spotty broadband connection I know first hand want it means to be on dial-up or satellite and try to have a successful business and serve clients well. Over 2 years ago, I moved my family to another community that has broadband service in order to serve my clients better and provide my family the opportunity of being able to do homework, work, shop, talk with family and friends, and download content more easily.

Not everyone has the ability to make that change, and is one of the biggest reasons why I feel so strongly about bringing service to ALL NH residents no matter where you live.

As Project Coordinator of the NH Broadband Mapping Program, we are working to identify the gaps in service around that state, so that we can make informed decisions on where invest in infrastructure is needed and how we can best achieve the goal of reaching EVERYONE.

I invite everyone to conduct the speed test on www.iwantbroadbandnh.org, so that we can conduct a more accurate survey of the need.

Broadband resources in New Hampshire

I listened with interest to this story this morning.

I'm a technology professional, and need the Internet for my daily work. Though I work in Manchester, I live in Nelson -- where there is not a lot of broadband options. I did the research before moving to Nelson.

It's going to take time for the Broadband Initiative to get moving -- so I thought I'd provide some ideas for people who would LOVE to get off dial-up now. Surprisingly, there are not-too-expensive options.

I work for NONE of the companies mentioned below (though I'm a customer of two.)

It's interesting to note that for each of the people reported on in your story, there's at least one, and perhaps two, fast, inexpensive broadband options for them.

For Gaale Klein and Heidi Konesko of Alstead,
NH, who sell on Ebay and REALLY need broadband,
there is a very simple solution: Verizon Wireless Broadband. This is a solution that is available in MANY areas of the state.

To check your coverage, go to the coverage map:

http://www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/CoverageLocatorController?requesttype...

When looking at the map, your area should be in blue. If you are within a few miles of blue, and no mountains in the way, you are still good.

What do you need to make this work?
A device called a MiFi 2200 -- which allows your home computers to connect to Verizon Wireless broadband either via USB or using a WiFi connection. The device costs $60 with a 2-year contract.
See the device at: http://www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/mobilebroadband/?page=products_mifi

Plans for data access start from $15 to $60/month.

How fast is it? I use it from my Motorolla Droid SmartPhone and get between 1 and 1.4 Mbps download.. which is enough to watch movies on your computer (Netflix, etc), or load EBay in a second or so.

Now, if you are on the "edge" of broadband coverage, you can increase the power of the Mifi by using a cellphone amplifier. They are about $150 - $220, including an external antenna you put out your window.

Here's a store that specializes in these amplifiers:
http://www.repeaterstore.com/products/repeaterkits/wilson/index.html?gcl...

(Though I think ALL the towns mentioned in your story can get Verizon Broadband.)

Ted Cooley in Orford can also use Verizon Broadband -- there is great coverage.

An often-overlooked avenue for broadband is called point-to-point wireless. There are two great startups in southwestern NH which are doing a great job providing wireless broadband to under-served communities.

WiValley (www.wivalley.com) is my provider for my home in Nelson. The equipment for wireless is expensive. However, WiValley offers plans that let you amortize the equipment over time (higher monthly rate) or pay a lower rate with a higher upfront cost. My 1Mbps download/512kbps upload costs me $89/month. (I use Verizon wireless as a backup). The service has been excellent.

Another wireless provider in the Monadnock Region is Radius North (http://www.radiusnorth.com/).

Both of these wireless companies were started by individuals in towns that were under-served. They are self-bootstrapping. So, they have not been effectively marketed, and many NH residents do not know these services are available.

Please visit their websites and see if you have coverage. It's another way to get broadband now.

The folks at Northern Human Services are in the biggest bind. Although Verizon provides SOLID broadband coverage in the towns mentioned in the story, the bandwidth provided probably will not meet their needs. However, a good choice to look at in that situation is VSAT satellite service -- a business service that can probably save thousands over point-to-point circuits, which they are probably using. They should talk to the folks at HughesNet.

Let's all hope we get lots of broadband pipes throughout the state soon -- but until that happens, these are some great alternatives.

no broadband access?

I have been involved professionally and personally with the broadband issue for many years and I am perplexed on how this report paints NH to be on a broadband back road. When I read an FCC report on broadband deployment I find that as of Dec 2008, there were 499,000 broadband connections in the Granite State. Here is the link to that report:
http://www.fcc.gov/wcb/iatd/comp.html
click on report next to the 2/10 press release line. See report pages 35 thru 38.
Is there a disconnect here or is someone trying to make a case for something else?
Maybe with just a little homework, those who "have no other option than dial-up" will find an answer to their prayers!

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