Starlink and Fibre Installation in Devon
Bringing High Speed Broadband to a rural, North Devon Business
Many people believe that being in the countryside means sacrificing super-fast internet for a slow and unreliable connection. Poor infrastructure is to blame; with phone exchanges and fibre cabinets few and far between, many rural properties are too far away to get a fast, reliable connection. In fact, one report from Ofcom, found that 75% of rural properties are still stuck with connections of 10mb or slower, with more remote areas subject to an abysmal maximum of 2mb. However, with the right equipment and support, it is possible for rural properties to achieve download speeds of around 200Mbps.
The Sleepy Owl,
The impact has been “hugely positive”
“We had a great experience from the beginning. Your company responded very quickly, came up with a great plan and we got a quote so we knew how much it was going to cost. I also enjoyed working with your team, very professional, friendly, accommodating and were able to work around our schedule. The work has been carried to the highest standards, it exceeded our expectations. The after support is also fantastic.“
– Jay, Sleepy Owl Devon
About The Sleepy Owl
The Sleepy Owl is a beautiful, boutique, family friendly retreat, nestled in a secret valley in the North Devon countryside. Spanning 20-acres, the property comprises of three high-end holiday lets: two treehouses and a barn conversion.
For many holidaymakers, the provision of a stable WiFi connection is a property must-have. From accessing local information to discovering nearby attractions and heritage sites, checking on the details of events and where to eat; the benefits of a robust, rural internet connection are abundant. In fact, Cornish Traditional Cottages say that WiFi is fourth on the visitors list of ‘must-have’s’ when shortlisting potential properties. Plus, with the tendency for visitors to share their experience real-time on social media, it makes sense to ensure that this is as frictionless as possible; user-generated content serves as excellent social proof, increasing your credibility and brings your brands promises into perspective.
Despite their best efforts, the owners of The Sleepy Owl were struggling to establish a consistent internet connection. The site was depending on a VDSL connection running at around 25Mbps, alongside a 4G connection connected via a load balancer but it wasn’t performing well at all and when it did work, the speed wasn’t sufficient. Understanding the impact this would have on their guests, they decided to explore the option of installing Starlink and with the help of ZOOC, now enjoy download speeds of up to 300Mbps.
The owner gave us a guided tour of their expansive site and we quickly identified a suitable location for the Starlink dish and established that a fibre backbone would be necessary to support the entire site. Fibre is a sustainable solution that will reduce the chance of electrical interference from neighbouring services, while providing isolation between each building for lightening protection. The site had no mobile signal and their unreliable 4G antenna was situated atop a nearby hill. The new properties had a vast array of smart devices that would need access to the internet but remain secure and separate from the guest WiFI. Jay was particularly clear in her need for a robust system with ongoing support.
As work was still ongoing at the site, the team kindly offered to pull the fibre in advance of our arrival, leaving us to terminate, finish off and test. The installation of the Starlink was straightforward, utilising the full 100ft of proprietary cable. Each property had a maintenance cupboard which made placing the hardware in a secure location simple. Due to its construction, WiFi coverage in the barn was an issue. As works had almost finished internally, hardwiring the additional internal WAPs would have been impractical, so we overcame this issue with the use of ‘mesh’. Unfortunately, we experienced several compatibility issues with the new Gen2 dish. Not ones to shy away from a challenge, we conducted extensive research and made appropriate alterations to ensure the installation was as robust and reliable as promised.
The owners of The Sleepy Owl are left with a Starlink, load balanced with the VDSL and accompanying infrastructure, managed, maintained and support by ZOOC and are achieving download speeds of up to 300Mbps. Load balancing ensures that should either the Starlink or the VDSL fail, the site will still have access to the internet; with no mobile signal in the valley, this feature is essential.