Fastcom, the Sligo-based telecommunications company, recently announced it had signed an open access agreement with open eir, the wholesale division of eir. The deal gives Fastcom access to 135,000 premises in Ireland’s west and northwest – including more than 23,200 homes and businesses in Mayo – allowing it to help make the area one of the best-served rural regions in Ireland.
The agreement follows open eir’s announcement that it will deliver rural broadband to a total of 1.9 million premises by 2020. As well as continuing its existing fixed broadband services, Fastcom can now access open eir’s fibre-enabled networks and deliver much-needed broadband speeds of up to 120Mbps to residents and businesses in the west.
The fast speeds will allow residential customers to stream video content from multiple devices and quickly download audio, image, and video files. Businesses, meanwhile, will be able to increase employee productivity and streamline processes that rely on fast internet access. As part of the new agreement, Fastcom will offer individuals and businesses the only six-month broadband contract available in the region – providing customers with extra flexibility and peace of mind. Fastcom expects the attractive contract offering, paired with the new deal, will help it double its telecoms customer base in the next two years.
Following its pilot in the west of Ireland, Fastcom will extend its broadband offerings to communities and businesses with access to open eir’s fibre network nationwide.
Ross Palmer, managing director of Fastcom, said “As a business operating in the west of Ireland, we know how vital broadband is to rural economies and communities. We are proving that businesses don’t need to be located in a city to succeed, but crucial to that is access to broadband. At Fastcom, we have noticed an explosion of internet traffic in the last two years. Year-on-year we are witnessing a 25 per cent increase in traffic as people shift from watching traditional TV broadcasts to streaming video content on multiple devices.
"Unfortunately, rural communities in Ireland feel left behind by the digital revolution. Homes and businesses need access to fast internet speeds and with this agreement, we have an excellent fibre coverage footprint as well as our existing ability to address areas without fixed connectivity with licensed radio broadband. This means that we now offer the most extensive high-speed broadband network in the west and northwest of Ireland, allowing us to help power rural Ireland’s digital growth."