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WiMAX launches in Milton Keynes
Wednesday 19 December 2007 12:32:36 by John Hunt

Tuesday saw the launch of ConnectMK, a private company formed by Milton Keynes council providing Wireless broadband services using WiMAX. The technology uses the network setup by Pipex Wireless, now known as Freedom4, which had been under trial from December 2006. The service is available to residential and business users with prices starting from £20/month for residential and £60 per month for business users. One key advantage of WiMAX over existing DSL based broadband packages is that there is no need for a phone line to be installed to get the service, which gives an average cost saving of around £11 per month (based on standard BT phone line rental) before the broadband service is taken into account.

Product Dowstream / Upstream speeds (Kbps) Usage allowance (GB) Setup cost Monthly cost
MK Home Package 1 1024 / 512 10 £45 £20
MK Home Package 2 2048 / 512 20 £45 £25
MK Home Package 3 2048 / 1024 40 £45 £50
MK Business Package 1 1024 / 1024 20 £45 £60
MK Business Package 2 2048 / 2048 40 £60 £100
MK Business Package 3 4096 / 2048 80 £60 £160

According to ZDNet, the usage limits will not come in to force for the first 6 months as Freedom4 do not have the backend capability to bill for this yet. All packages are on a 12 month contract and ConnectMK provide suitable hardware to use the service.

The service will be good news for some residents in Milton Keynes who have suffered from TPON phone lines, which use fibre optics for some of the line in place of the standard copper and therefore cannot carry ADSL signals.

Comments

Posted by AndrueC over 9 years ago
That's expensive as an alternative to DSL but I suppose it's not aimed those people. If you have no other choice or are always on the move it's not bad I suppose. I do wonder how well it handles contention though.
Posted by Gitface over 9 years ago
It might be an option if they'd not stuck the masts on top of the telephone exchanges and only those who are near the city centre and the exchanges can actualy get it, i.e. not those with the speed issues
Posted by The_Engineer over 9 years ago
TPON (Telephony over Passive Optical Networks) doesn't use Aluminium. Doh! Yes, I know what the arctical means, but that is not what it ses.

Posted by CARPETBURN over 9 years ago
What are the usage limits on the various services?? i hope its pretty substantial for the amount they charge for home package 3 and upwards.
Posted by herdwick over 9 years ago
The usage limits are in the column headed "Usage Allowance". www.specsavers.co.uk :-)
Posted by SlimJ over 9 years ago
Why so expensive? I'm with VFast on a similar wireless service, 2mb up/down and it's £25 a month, setup is more expensive however. They also do a 10mb up/down service for £37... and no limits. :)
Posted by AndrueC over 9 years ago
The masts are on top of exchanges? Rofl!

OTOH perhaps that's the only way they could get a decent sync :D
Posted by CARPETBURN over 9 years ago
quote"The usage limits are in the column headed "Usage Allowance". www.specsavers.co.uk :-)"

Er i meant on the freedom4 site, i dont doubt the info above is correct but where is it listed on the freedom4 site? (maybe i am really blind and missed it)
Posted by martinsaunders over 9 years ago
Try looking for it on www.connectmk.com or .co.uk

...errr :)
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
www.connectmk.com fails to deliver the required basics for an ISP website, e.g.

. Who is my contract with ?
. Who's providing support (cmk, f4, ano?)
. Code of Practice, Ts+Cs ? (legally required)

And marketing is lies e.g. "FREEDOM4 ... actively participated in all global industry forums ... a leading force in establishing the WiMAX standards worldwide." Not possible for a company newly launched in 2006.

Christmas is coming, anyone smell turkey?
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
Ofcom-required stuff like Ts+Cs, Code of Practice seem also to be missing from the Freedom4 site. Their ex-Pipex board (Dubyens, Read) should know better. The ridiculous "actively participated ..." stuff *is* there, in ever so slightly different form. The contact address is a rented Regus office on an 0870 number. Company accounts are already overdue (31/10). Super.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 9 years ago
quote"Try looking for it on www.connectmk.com or .co.uk

...errr :)"

Both www.connectmk.com and www.connectmk.co.uk goto a 123reg webpage and nothing else.
Duh!

So i ask again where is the website that mentions those usage figures... c_j_ seems to be the only one on the ball here and understands the whole service seems to be in violation of ofcom rules.
Posted by AndrueC over 9 years ago
Only available near exchanges. Poor throughput for the price. Dodgy website. Overdue financial statements.

Gosh, what a cool service.

Makes me go all tingly just thinking about it :D
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
www.connectmk.net is still working as I write this.
MK has big problems with DSL because New MK isn't centred on Old MK, where the phone exchange was built. And there's TPON, and aluminium. None of which mattered for voice, all of which is bad news for DSL. And then there's the analogue-era cable network. BT aren't motivated to help MK by fixing the BT bits (e.g. see 3.10 of document below).

BT exchanges, however, are good places for *other* people to put masts (backhaul available).

http://cmis.milton-keynes.gov.uk/CmisWebPublic/Binary.ashx?Document=21409
may be interesting reading. Or not.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 9 years ago
quote"www.connectmk.net is still working as I write this."

Whacking that into IE for me just goes to an MSN search page lol
Interestingly at the top of that search is... http://www.connectek.net/ (thats EK rather than MK no idea if its related) and when going to that page at the top right it says... 'connectek.net expired on 12/14/2007 and is pending renewal or deletion'
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
connectmk.com and .co.uk are still 1-2-3 (Pipex) holding pages.

Although I said the .net was "working" earlier, it's actually mostly broken once you try to get off the front page. Sorry.

connectek and connectmk seem unrelated based on the archive of www.connectek.net at web.archive.org
Posted by CARPETBURN over 9 years ago
quote"Although I said the .net was "working" earlier, it's actually mostly broken once you try to get off the front page. Sorry."
Not your fault c_j_ no need to appologise :)

quote"connectek and connectmk seem unrelated based on the archive of www.connectek.net at web.archive.org"
I didnt even think to check that, nice method you used :)

So all in all we have a company offering a wireless solution with limiting caps for the price on some services and a buggered web page lol as others have said not exactly good.
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
(for anyone still reading)

Six days later and connectmk.co.uk and .com are still 1-2-3 (Pipex) holding pages. OK there haven't been many *business* days in that interval, so let's see what progress Thursday, allegedly a working day, brings.
Posted by CARPETBURN over 9 years ago
If pipex are involved anywhere along the line it will be years before the connectmk site is working as it should. Pipexs own control panel was stuffed for around a year and a half with various things on it not working (wouldnt shock me if that hasnt changed) My advice to people is forget all about this service.
Posted by c_j_ over 9 years ago
(for the record)

Connectmk.co.uk is still a 1-2-3 (Pipex) holding page, and apparently has been ever since it died, which appears now to be fourteen days ago. Not all of those days were non-working days, although many were.

It's not the usual way to attract and impress potential customers and/or investors.
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