Kill the NBN? Please Don’t!

No Malcolm. This is what we want – fibre to the house !

Been a while since my last post but I had to put pen to paper (well, fire up the PC and hammer the keys anyway) to add my voice to the growing concerns about the Coalition’s intention to stop the NBN.

Here at Shoalhaven Heads, like many smaller regional towns, we are really at the mercy of Telstra. Mobile phone reception is a joke for many who live here and there are ‘dead spots’ where you can forget mobile phone service – let alone wireless internet. So we are dependent on fixed line services for both landline phones and ADSL internet. Continue reading

Bigpond Wireless Problems

Locals and visitors to Shoalhaven Heads are experiencing major problems with their Bigpond Wireless service connections. Here’s the symptoms: Good wireless signal strength but slow / very erratic internet speeds. Many customers are complaining that the service drops out after a few minutes of use and is basically unusable.

Like many regional areas of Australia, broadband coverage and service levels can vary considerably depending on the time of year (and especially this time of year here with the large numbers of tourists and visitors expecting the same level of internet service they are accustomed to at home). However, it seems this year is particularly bad.

One possible explanation Continue reading

Case Study : Setting up a home VOIP system

VOIP CallDid you know that you can save a lot of money on your monthly phone bills by making more use of your broadband connection?

Most people have a fast enough internet connection these days and a typical 5 minute call only uses around 5Mb of data so that shouldn’t be an issue either.

Sounds complex, but it needn’t be – with most VOIP providers, the setup is very straightforward and most pre-configure the box they supply for you so it’s often just a matter of ‘plug it all together and start making calls’.

Let’s look at a real world example and discover the costs involved to set it up and begin saving money. Continue reading

Broadband – What Affects Your Speed?

By: Nick Cox

Broadband providers have been under scrutiny recently, as it has come to light that broadband speeds advertised by ISP’s (Internet Service Providers) are not matching actual broadband speeds that customers receive.

It’s proving to be a frustrating time for many customers. Many have been promised speeds of up to 8 Meg, but they are finding themselves with connection speeds, that in some cases are only marginally better than dial-up. Continue reading

Broadband plans explained

by Andy Turner
Coastal Computers & Design

One of the things that really gets to me is how many of my customers are either paying too much for their broadband service or are on a ‘budget’ plan that only gives them slightly faster than dialup speed and they still pay through the nose – especially when they go over their ‘free’ monthly data limit. This article aims to explain in plain english what the technical terms mean so you can make an informed choice.

1. Speed.
The speed of your broadband connection is usually always described as two numbers separated by a ‘dash’. For example 512/128. The first number is your download speed, the second your upload speed. The higher the speed of your connection – the more you can do with it and of course, the greater the cost. The still common 256/64 plans are not really true broadband – the 64k upload speed is barely faster than dial up – and if you wanted to use say, a webcam, the experience for the person viewing it would be very jerky. I recommend a minimum of a 512/128 plan or for around $10 a month more a 1500/256 plan or higher.
I worry about companies that describe their plans as ‘fast’ or ‘superfast’ – why not just make it clear what the plan speeds are rather than confusing customers. If I was cynical I’d say that maybe that is their intention… Continue reading

Want a ChromeBook for under $200?
Want a ChromeBook for under $200?

Ok, so what’s a ChromeBook and why are they taking the computing world by storm? There are different reasons, but in my humble opinion, two words – Not Microsoft. I’ve

... read more

Want to make your home smarter?
Want to make your home smarter?

Setting up a smarthome is becoming easier every month with new, cheaper devices coming into the market regularly. At our place, I have installed a Google Home (3 in fact

... read more

How to take control of Windows 10 Updates
How to take control of Windows 10 Updates

One of the problems that Windows 10 users face is the update process. Updates are important but, as we have seen in the past, they can go terribly wrong. Experienced

... read more

Windows 10 – the nightmare continues…
Windows 10 – the nightmare continues…

I’ve been doing this game for some time now. Cut my teeth on Windows 3.0, then progressed through all the versions, 3.1, 95, 98, 98SE, XP, Vista (cough..), Windows 7,

... read more