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Fibre to the barges: Hyperoptic connects houseboats to gigabit broadband

Pure fibre ISP Hyperoptic has proven that fixed-line services and mobile homes aren’t mutually exclusive – by connecting houseboats to gigabit broadband. 

Residential boats moored in London’s South Dock marina previously had to content with mobile broadband dongles to get online, but now customers can order Hyperoptic’s 20Mbps, 100Mbps and 1Gbps (1,000Mbps) services instead. 

Hyperoptic broadband is available in all berths in the South Dock and Greenland Dock and around 50 per cent of residents have already signed up. 

Harbour master for Southwark Council Patrick Keating said: “It was fantastic to be able to address the residents’ broadband issues with such an outstanding solution. 

“It’s an issue that I have been investigating for a while; I never envisaged a jump from nothing to a gigabit. The residents are thrilled.” 

“At some point everyone will be on a fibre connection” – Hyperoptic MD Dana TobakHyperoptic typically installs FTTP (Fibre to the Premises) broadband in large residential complexes. In bringing fibre to the South Dock marina, the process largely remained the same – except that houseboats, not apartments, were on the end of each connection. 

Hyperoptic installed its fibre directly into a hub on each dock before linking up each boat with CAT5e cabling. 

While mobile broadband speeds in London are typically higher than they are elsewhere in the UK, capped data plans and the metal structure of boats mean that even superfast 4G, despite the impressive speeds, isn’t preferable to a dedicated fixed fibre line. 

Related: Hyperoptic’s 2015 broadband and line rental pricesStephen Waddington, a resident of the Greenland Dock said: “Mobile signals are flaky on a steel hulled Dutch barge and teens quickly exhaust data plans. The dock is on the opposite side of the river for Canary Wharf but lacked its data infrastructure.” 

All of Hyperoptic’s packages come with unlimited downloads as standard and no traffic management is applied. 

Of course, heading off to a regatta means that the Hyperoptic line along with mains electricity and other conveniences will have to be left behind at the berths, so houseboat captains shouldn’t throw those donges overboard just yet. 

Hyperoptic’s services are available in over 100,000 premises across the UK in London, Cardiff, Bristol, Reading, ManchesterLeeds and Liverpool with new installations taking place in in Sheffield, Birmingham, Newcastle, Nottingham and Glasgow

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