Mobile Internet for a community initiative?

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Martyn Welch

Jun 28, 2014, 5:57:56 PM6/28/14
to Northants LUG Discussion List,
Hi Guys,

I'm just doing some research to see if it would be possible to set up a "community internet cafe" near where I live. A location was floated and I've got an ideas regarding the hardware/software/nuts and bolts. The piece of the puzzle that's worrying me the most is the internet connectivity.

I doubt the location has a land line and I'd rather not get into trying to get ADSL fitted. Assuming funding could be sorted out, I'm thinking mobile broadband might be a semi viable option. Potential coverage/bandwidth issues aside, I'm a little dubious as to whether a group would be able to get a contract (I'd prefer not to take on the burden of providing the connectivity entirely in my name...) and use it in this way. Does anyone have a feel for whether this would be viable and/or if there are any groups trying to increase internet availability in communities operating in Northamptonshire that might be worth talking to?

A lot of the information I'm finding about community broadband is more about gaining access to broadband where not exists (not the issue, we can get broadband) or convincing BT to upgrade the infrastructure to fibre to the cabinet (it'd be nice, but also not what I'm looking for). What I'm looking to do is discover how feasible it'd be to provide a community resource much as a library would (should?) where a static library is available.

My research so far is beginning to make me believe I may be getting into territory way beyond my reach, though I'd be happy to be convinced otherwise... 


Stephen Bridges

Jun 29, 2014, 5:28:41 AM6/29/14
to Northackton
You can PAYG on mobile broadband - purchase something like a Three MyFi - providing you don't require the dedicated bandwidth of a physical LAN.  Otherwise you'll need to buy a 3G router, which is basically the same as an ADSL router but with an antenna and a SIM slot.  These are more expensive though.


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