The TUPS Company in conjunction with the Gunnedah Shire Council today officially launched the Gunnedah Community Wi-Fi at the Gunnedah Shire Council Depot delivering fast, cost-effective internet connectivity.
The Gunnedah Community Wi-Fi provides local businesses in the Gunnedah area with cost effective, high speed managed computing services that include broadband internet access.
The Gunnedah Community Wi-Fi is based on an innovative Australian-designed and owned solution called TUPS from The TUPS Company, that uses specially fitted out shipping containers to provide cost effective, portable yet robust data solutions to remote and regional communities.
The Mayor of Gunnedah Shire Council, Adam Marshall spoke at the launch and participated in a live demonstration of the community Wi-Fi, by communicating directly with local businesses users and members of the community via the internet using a videoconferencing link. The TUPS-based solution will allow Gunnedah business users to have high quality internet access without the usual associated broadband costs.
In officially launching the Gunnedah Community Wi-Fi, Gunnedah Shire Council Mayor Adam Marshall said, 'We are extremely proud as a community to be not only the Koala Capital of the World but also the First Wi-Fi Town in Australia!
'The TUPS implementation gives our regional and rural users access to pricing plans that are available to those in the city, without compromising on the quality and speed of the internet service. We look forward to bringing more businesses online and to providing access to residents and farming families who are located more remotely out of town,' he said.
TUPS has been specially designed to overcome the communications limitations that stop many similar communities and those in more remote areas in Australia from accessing fast internet connections.
TUPS uses a unique network layout that features long-range wireless devices that deliver cost effective connectivity and increase connectivity speed where connections are slow.
According to Geoff Peach, Managing Director, The TUPS Company, 'We are very proud to be able to deliver cost effective, fast broadband connectivity to the Gunnedah community.
'We have been very pleased with the pilot phase in Gunnedah during which local businesses were able to connect to the internet quickly and inexpensively.
'As we are a physically large nation, our communications are challenged by the economics of delivering fibre optic cable to all premises in Australia, irrespective of location.
'Despite the availability of ADSL in regional areas, many users cannot access the technology as ADSL can only work when the premises is located close to the exchange (approximately 2.5km).
'Even in areas where Telstra and other operators have installed a 'fibre backbone' with fibre optic connections to their exchanges -- most suburbs and major country towns -- the final connection to the premises over the last mile is still copper and therefore very slow.
'As a result many rural and remote users have had to choose from slow dial-up services over the traditional copper telephony system or costly satellite communications. This leaves a very large proportion of Australians - the so called 'last mile' with no broadband communications at all.
'We want to resolve that impasse with the provision of a Wi-Fi based solution that is modular, portable and therefore easy to install,' Geoff Peach said.
'We can have communities like Gunnedah up and running with broadband connectivity within 12 weeks.
TUPS is a fully self contained and portable system that can be deployed anywhere - irrespective of terrain. Housed in standard shipping containers the solution is easy to transport direct to any site and fast to setup. It features multiple power supply options including a generator that can run for a month without refueling where no mains power is available. This is backed up by an Uninterruptible Power Supply using batteries.
Once installed the TUPS system is self-supporting as it contains everything that's needed from replacement hardware, work tools and a vehicle.
'The solution's portability and cost effectiveness make it perfect for ehealth and education applications in remote and regional communities as well as the mining sector,' Geoff Peach said. 'The applications here in Australia and around the world are limitless.'