Installation of ultra-fast fibre optics is big broadband boost for business hubs [Derby Evening Telegraph (England)]
(Derby Evening Telegraph (England) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) TWO business hubs in Derby hope to attract more companies as they expect to become the first in the city to be equipped with high- speed broadband. Friar Gate Studios, in Ford Street, is set to receive an increased bandwidth of 100Mbps (megabits for second), thanks to investment by Derby City Council, which owns the building.
The funding comes as a result of the authority's bid to be part of the Pounds 50 million investment in an ultra-fast fibre optic- based 80 to 100Mbps broadband service, launched by the Government following the success of its initial service upgrade across the UK's 10 major cities.
As well as improving broadband speeds, it will also support next- generation telecommunications, including telephone, television and mobile technologies.
The technology at Friar Gate Studios, which opened in 2007 and has 40 offices, will be supplied by communications specialists Pace Telecom.
It will benefit creative companies based at the hub, many of which rely on fast broadband and are increasingly exploiting the latest technologies, including the Cloud and Skype, during the course of their daily business.
As well as faster upload and download speeds, which will improve the transportation of large data files, it will enable tenants to make cost savings from using Voice over IP (VOIP) technology, as well as supporting various features such as high definition conference calling and video conferencing technology.
The upgrade will also enable businesses to make use of web-based back-up services where data can be stored remotely, in case of computer breakdown. Friar Gate Studios manager Ann Bhatti said: "Our tenants will benefit from noticeably faster upload and download speeds, which will be particularly helpful when sending and receiving large files such as video, graphics and large raw data files and working with high capacity software such as the Cloud and Dropbox."
Paul Howard, of Cactus Images, which is a tenant at Friar Gate Studios, said: "A good bandwidth provision is absolutely crucial for Cactus Images because it is how we deliver images to our clients. "While we can sometimes upload overnight, it is when we have tight deadlines, needing quick turnaround times, that bandwidth becomes essential and this can be the difference between clients using us or another agency."
Richard Williams, the city council's director of regeneration, said: "The investment at Friar Gate Studios brings Derby a step closer to becoming a city with high-speed broadband capabilities, which will benefit our business community tenfold and bring greater opportunities for economic growth."
Meanwhile, another building, which houses several firms, will also have access to super-fast internet speeds.
Darley Abbey Mills will also get 100Mbps download speeds after its owner, Patterns Properties Limited, teamed up with IT and telecommunications provider Excell Group to install a dedicated fibre line to the property.
Managing director of PPL Anthony Attwood said: "Faster internet access will bring huge benefits to the businesses in Darley Abbey.
"It will enable them to do what they did before but work faster, with enough bandwidth to meet an increasing demand.
"The investment was vital in order to fulfil our commitment to transform Darley Abbey Mills into a vibrant and high-quality destination for business, leisure, tourism and cultural activities.
"There has already been strong interest from our current tenants and we have already been successful in attracting some businesses away from Pride Park and other traditional office locations in the city."
Graham Bennett, chairman of LightSpeed Derby, which campaigns for investment in the city's broadband network, said: "This new investment at Darley Abbey Mills will provide businesses with what is so badly needed for the 21st century - ultrafast high-quality broadband to meet the challenges and opportunities of the growing knowledge economy."
"It will enable businesses to do what they did before but work faster." ANTHONY ATTWOOD
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