Broadband For Over 70s?

Question: is there a free broadband package in Ireland for people over 70 i.e. those who already qualify for free line rental and a certain amount of free calls. If there isn’t, is there a discounted package availability?

Reason being is that my grandfather (over 70) is a daily internet user, still sits on various boards and is involved in various groups (there is no such thing as pure retirement in this country) so needs regular use of email, sends a good bit of photographs to family far and wide etc. While he would love the speed of broadband, the various costs are off-putting. He’s not going to be a massive broadband user who needs to crawl for videos, download torrents, share gigabyte files etc – just someone who wants to do things faster and more efficiently.

While dialup is still of use to him I know broadband access in the house (which is readily available all around him) would be a more ideal scenario. So I ask, are there any special deals available from any broadband provider for people aged over 70?

Why Broadband Is Still A Joke

Tom Raftery makes a good post about the appalling state of broadband while Gerry O’Sullivan published a good joke on his blog during the week on his relatively still-new blog, Unlaoised.

Construction workers building the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh find a network of copper wires buried several metres below Holyrood. Archaeologists examine the find and come to the conclusion that the ancient Scots had an advanced telephone system in prehistoric times.

Workmen in London find a deeply buried network of fibre-optic cables during excavations for the new Olympic Stadium. Archaeologists confirm that prehistoric Londoners had a sophisticated high-speed telecommunications network at their disposal.

Deep excavations at the Port Tunnel site in Dublin unearth neither copper wires nor fibre optic. Archaeologists conclude that the ancient Irish communicated using mobile phones and wireless broadband.

Don’t know about you but I thought it was great…. (original post for it here).

With Keith’s woes and the trouble I had doing an Eircom BB setup for a friend last night its a wonder we’re able to communicate at all.

A Country Under Wi-Fi? Not us!

It would be great to see it in Ireland.

A haven for IT companies. A haven for foreign investment. A country under complete wi-fi access from Dublin Airport to the hills of Donegal, Malin Head to Mizen head blah blah blah.

Whatever.

At least in Singapore it looks like they have it right….

By the end of the year, it will be possible to roam almost anywhere in Singapore and get a wireless signal. As part of its Intelligent Nation 2015 program, the island nation will be able to boast of countrywide Wi-Fi coverage in a few months, the exec VP of WISP SingTel said in a recent interview. “At the end of the year, Singapore will be one mega hot spot,” he said. “They are breaking Singapore into three regions and looking at ways to maximize coverage.” The Intelligent Nation program, officially unveiled last year, seeks to make Singapore a global leader in communications technology in a decade.

Not only that but they’re looking at delivering broadband access to 90% of all residences. Let the Irish government take note!

News.com with the story….

Lidl To Start Dealing Broadband

They might only ever have two people working the checkouts (which is one of my pet hatreds of shopping there) but according to Om Malik’s blog this evening they’re about to become the next big supermarket broadband dealer.

Lidl, a German discount supermarket – think Walmart type operation – is going to start selling discount broadband packages soon. The company plans to offer high speed connections for about 20 Euros a month. They will also sell a VoIP-based phone service as well.

If you squeeze in between the german sausages and coleslaw at the end of the shop, you might just find that 6mb broadband connection you’ve been looking for. No word on if the Irish chain of stores, of which there is one in Kilkenny and likely one in your own home town too will be offering the service but the plans are in place to roll it out in Europe.

Chorus Ups Cable Speed

(Via). Picked up this post earlier this evening having been away from the PC most of the weekend, at least in an online capacity anyway. So it seems that Chorus are upping their cable speed and lowering their prices, bringing them into line with NTL. Meaning that my 1mb cable service comes down from €30 to €20. But seen as I’m already paying €30 a month, their new pricing structure gives me access to a 3mb service at that price.

Low and behold, a DSL speed test this evening across various sites is showing an average d/s of 2.5mb. Do I thank Chorus? Think so…

Not only that, but if I wanted a 6mb line it looks like its only an extra tenner a month 🙂

Taking It To The Times

Damien Mulley poses a nice piece in today’s Sunday Times focussing on the splitting of Eircom – a good look at the scenario surrounding a voluntary split of the company, or a government / ComReg forced split and its impact on broadband delivery. Given the way other large companies (thinking quite global here) have handled government forced splits and suits, it would be well in the interest of Eircom to enable the process themselves if we’re ever going to climb out of the hole we’re in when it comes to broadband delivery in the country. Pick up the paper, or read it online here.