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London 18th August 2011 – Households and businesses in rural and remote areas who still don’t have access to broadband will soon have a range of ISPs – and packages – to choose from thanks to a new network initiative being launched by UK-based premium data communications company Fluidata and independent Systems Integrator & Managed Services partner, Magdalene.

As well as benefiting consumers, this will also benefit the ISP community who will, for the first time, be able to access remote communities to offer competitive connectivity services via Fluidata’s wholesale network without the significant costs associated with enabling an exchange or building to an area. Equally, for many local authorities who lack the resources and funds to market their local broadband initiatives, the opportunity to be able to offer local businesses and residents a choice of provider will encourage uptake which, according to recent reports, currently remains low in many rural areas.

The aggregation of multiple last mile rural networks works over Fluidata’s already extensive carrier independent wholesale platform. ISPs can interconnect into the platform once which then provides access to any of the potentially hundreds of disparate networks across the UK over which they can provide service to their customers, either business or consumer.

Piers Daniell, Managing Director, Fluidata comments: “The cost to an ISP of building a last-mile network or connecting to one across the country can be significant, dramatically reducing take up and hence limiting choice of provider to the end user. By offering ISPs an opportunity to use our network, that cost is removed and instead shared between the thirty or so providers already using the platform for more standard DSL services. ISPs will pay a one-off payment of GBP 1000 to join the network which will provide access to many of the areas benefiting from the investment into rural broadband. The Government has pushed back its timetable to 2015, missing the EU target of 2013 to provide 100 per cent of the UK with 2 Mb/s per second and so the need to find an alternative solution is extremely pressing.

“This will benefit local councils who will benefit from sales and marketing investment from the ISPs to gain subscriptions and will open rural areas to ISPs to offer consumers real choice. Our system provides the business model for a heavily subsidised government backed initiative which could falter if take up by customers is not significant.”

Loic Flageul, Magdalene comments: “By combining the real world experience of Magdalene in building last mile networks with an integrated virtual OSS/BSS stack and Fluidata’s wholesaling access we have a compelling case to work with any provider or network to deliver access to multiple ISPs. By delivering choice to consumers we are ensuring the Government’s commitment to get 100 per cent of homes to 2 Mb/s become a reality.”

The service is currently being piloted in a number of locations around the country with existing or new networks.

Notes to Editors:

For more information, interviews or images please contact Carrot Communications:
Caroline Tarbett – 07914 014145 / caroline.tarbett@carrotcomms.co.uk
Kate Hartley - 07714 065 233 / kate.hartley@carrotcomms.co.uk

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