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Tooway launches broadband challenge
Monday 27 February 2012 18:22:54 by Andrew Ferguson

Satellite broadband has been an option for broadband in the remotest parts of the UK for some years, the relatively recent launches of Ka Band services has improved the speeds and contention levels compared to the older services.

Tooway are convinced their service which others a multitude of speeds, usage allowances and contention ratios can fix the broadband not-spots and slow-spots across the UK. Though its claim that there "need be no exclusions to broadband access", should be qualified as approval for a two way satellite service site is required by Ofcom, to ensure that the uplink does not cause problems to airfields, radar installations and other services.

The offer as it stands is that if councils can identify the 20 toughest locations across the UK, the firm will provide a free service to a local community for 2012. Packages currently start at £24.99 a month for a 6 Mbps down, 1 Mbps up and 8 GB monthly data allowance (reduces to 4GB in June 2012), rising to £599.99 a month for a symmetrical 4 Mbps service which is sold as unlimited. The unlimited products tooway sell use a sliding time windows to manage usage, with usage that triggers the fair usage policy seeing traffic slowed down. We have reproduced the fair usage details for their £54.99 consumer service below.

Our Winter 'UNLIMITED' offer relates to the relaxing of our Fair Access Policy to give the first 5,000 new Tooway 10 and 10+users (who are signed up between now and the end of May 2012) a much more generous data allowance.

Specifically this means that a new Tooway 10 service, between your installation/activation date and 31st May 2014:-

  • The standard Tooway 10 - 1 hour Sliding Time Window FAP level will be doubled to 3 GB per hour before the service starts to throttle you to 2048/512 kbps (still true broadband speeds)
  • The interim 1 day and 1 week Sliding Time Window FAP levels are not being applied at all, these are UNLIMITED
  • If you download/upload more than the standard Tooway 10 - 4 weekly data allowance of 13 GB, instead of being throttled to sub-broadband speeds of 64/16 kbps, your service will continue unlimited but at a broadband peak speed of 1024/256 kbps
  • Between 11.00 PM and 2.00 PM UT, the 4 week Sliding Time Window will ONLY be enforced if you exceed TWICE the promotional data allowance. (For clarity this means that between 2.00 PM and 11.00 PM UT, only the 1 hour and 4 week FAP thresholds will be enforced).

In addition to this, new subscribers who sign up to this limited time offer will received DOUBLE the standard Tooway 10 data allowance from 1st March 2014 for the life of their contract.

Unlimited on the most popular £54.99 tooway 10 product

For the hardest places to reach in the UK, where even fixed wireless services are economically challenging, satellite services are a solution, but with the BDUK projects underway, it would be very dissapointing if local authorities were to consign hundreds of properties in each local authority area to having a satellite service as their likely broadband solution for the next five to eight years.

The current satellite services are a lot better than those from years gone by, but the complex usage allowances and contention mean that while video services and basic interactivity are possible, it is often at a lot lower speed than the headline speeds if extensive use is made of the connection, and the monthly fees are well above the UK average for the usage offered.


Posted by Michael_Chare over 5 years ago
Avonline sell Tooway10 unlimited for £49.99pm. The prices are similar to the other Tooway suppliers which can be found on the Eutelsat website. The FUP terms are certainly difficult to understand.

I do wonder what the impact of the 600ms ping times would have on the time taken to load a typical commercial web page which possibly needs several DNS names to be looked up.
Posted by creakycopperline over 5 years ago
weak as piss wireless thinks it's te bees kness,
overpriced and underpowered.
Posted by timmay over 5 years ago
@creakycopperline what are you referring to?
Posted by timmay over 5 years ago
Shame this seems to be only for councils to suggest locations. I'm sure I can suggest hundreds just in Kent.

Thing is Satellite really is a last resort and I think the is a marketing ploy to improve knowledge that the service does exist (although at normal prising is really expensive and very limited)
Posted by dpeilow over 5 years ago
You do not need Ofcom approval for this type of service unless you are within the boundary of an airfield. The link you provided is for transportable satellite antennas.

This gives the correct details:

As for 600ms ping times - this is dealt with by pre-caching. Satellite has certainly way less latency than any real-world 3G connection I've used.
Posted by Michael_Chare over 5 years ago
Please would you explain the pre-caching process.
Posted by otester over 5 years ago

Sounds more like 2G to me.

I typically get less than 100, however it can range between 60-150.

Just did a (London server), 1 bar HSDPA:

p - d - u

103ms - 1.13Mbps - 1.50Mbps

Posted by creakycopperline over 5 years ago
£600 for 4mbps value for money? that's what i'm refering to.
Posted by Mince1978 over 5 years ago
There obviously comedians!! Who in there right mind would pay so much for broadband. And why has it not become compulsary for fibre BB everywhere???? Its not hard is it... put the bloody cables in you capitalist scum!!!!
Posted by bigluap over 5 years ago
Speedtest: Warwick to Namesco, London
Ping 192 / DOWN 1.82 Mbps / UP 1.32 Mbps
Posted by otester over 5 years ago

I got a quote for a leaseline, fiber cable would cost ~£64k for install, an FTTC box costs ~£40k, if you want fiber so badly then pay for it yourself.

People wanted low prices/competition at the expense of infrastructure investment/coverage.

They got it, so enjoy it.
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