Aran Islands are not exactly the technological frontier of Ireland. Thinking about it, Aran Islands don’t seem to be at the forefront of… anything. The largest of the three rocky isles, Inishmore, is probably best known for its prehistoric fort of Dún Aonghasa. And yet, there are some 700 houses and people live there their lives and everyday issues and challenges.
One of such challenges is doubtlessly access to the Internet. For most of the people living there sending emails or watching YouTube videos is a simply unreachable dream. Netflix is a luxury. And it’s all down to the fact the community there is too small for any bigger broadband provider to care. It’s simply too costly to care. Probably.
It all has changed when Patrick Cotter, the CEO of Rural WiFi, decided to bring his installation crew to Inishmore and install his bespoke broadband solution in the first few houses earlier this month. People were skeptical. They have heard it all before. After all, bringing the Internet to the Aran Islands is a great PR story. And yet, the years are passing and people still have to rely on their mobile phones barely connecting to the network.
So how is Rural WiFi different from what was there before? First of all, says Patrick, we care. We don’t just send our equipment and forget. We did it in the past and it didn’t work. So we had to change our approach. Years ago, when I started fitting buses and trains with our Fleetconnect WiFi, we had to develop these high gain antenna to get a signal. So we did it again, this time for rural customers. Our installers traverse the country and install external antennas we developed. This is how we are able to fulfill the promise the government couldn’t.
Since the first installation, Rural WiFi started taking Aran Islands by storm. The crew is coming every two weeks to install more houses and businesses proving “impossible” is just a word. So the next time when you visit Inishmore and stay in one of their hostels or B&Bs, the wifi you use is very likely provided by Rural WiFi.