But accessing a decent service has been difficult with video calls dropping out during lectures, even those with smaller class sizes.
“My own video and audio was really choppy and incomprehensible to classmates most of the time,” he said, adding that uploading any work was a nightmare.
As a tech-orientated person, Robbie enjoys gaming but found it virtually impossible to play online or even download games as the broadband was so poor in his Old Town flat. And if his flatmate started watching Netflix, he would lose his internet connection altogether.
Robbie’s experience sadly is not unique in Edinburgh: latest Ofcom data from the Connected Nations 2021 report shows 7,447 premises unable to get 30mbps broadband – considered to be the minimum viable speed for video conferencing. This makes it difficult or impossible for thousands of people in the city to work or study from home, access basic online services such as healthcare, manage their money online or keep in touch with friends and relatives.
A survey by price comparison website Uswitch last summer named Edinburgh as the UK’s “outage capital”, with its residents suffering the longest time without broadband per person, losing nine million hours of broadband over the year. And estate agency Knight Frank this year warned the city was lagging behind other major UK cities in digital connectivity as measured by fibre availability, capacity and performance, mobile network capabilities and closeness to data centre services.
Wireless gigabit broadband is here
In response to these challenges, WeLink Communications UK has launched Britain’s first wireless gigabit broadband service in Edinburgh, bringing lightning-fast internet speeds to the Old and New Towns without the need to dig up streets in the World Heritage Site.
We are inviting households and businesses to get in touch to learn about our range of introductory offers. WeLink is pioneering a fixed-wireless mmWave broadband approach that is much quicker and less expensive to deploy than traditional fibre-to-the-premises broadband. It extends the reach of fibre into an area using the latest advances in wireless mesh technologies and network routing to deliver gigabit speeds for homes and businesses while avoiding the needless delay and disruption of laying fibre-optic cables underground.
Robbie Godsell is one of WeLink’s early adopters. He said: “Speed is vastly better. Streaming is butter-smooth, downloading games is super-fast now and I can game online with low latencies. All-round performance is substantially better in every single sense. I’m able to do everything that I couldn’t do before and it’s made a big improvement to my quality of life. I would definitely recommend WeLink to others within the Old and New Town areas where the ability to get strong Wi-Fi is severely lacking due to the limitations of poor infrastructure in a World Heritage Site.
“WeLink’s technology bypasses those limitations and provides what is really the only option for fast Wi-Fi in buildings like mine. I’m not limited anymore by the terrible connection I used to have and the thought of ever going back to those previous download speeds makes me shudder!”
Natalie Duffield, CEO of WeLink Communications UK said: “We are proud to be investing in Edinburgh and are committed to the city. As CEO of our predecessor company IntechnologyWiFi, I rolled out EdiFreeWiFi, one of the biggest deployments of free public Wi-Fi in the UK which has attracted more than 1.15m registered users to date. We understand the local landscape and the massive market opportunity for supplying the kind of lightning-fast connectivity that households and businesses can depend on in this day and age, initially within EH1, EH2 and EH3 but rapidly expanding across the wider city soon.”
You can check if we can connect you to our service by visiting our website and using the postcode checker. If you would like to find out more, or sign up as a case study for our service, please contact us at [email protected]