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RealTime IT News

Ihug Embraces Rural Customers

[Sydney, AUSTRALIA] Australian and New Zealand ISP ihug is setting its sights on rural Internet users, by expanding the wholesale offering of its Ultra satellite Internet service to ISPs across the country.

The move will have a dual impact on the ISP industry. Ihug plans to use the wholesaling to develop relationships it has with ISPs across Australia; at the same time, the offer can potentially aid smaller ISPs in regional and rural Australia, by allowing them to keep pace with larger competition with access to services such as broadband.

Ihug's Ultra satellite high-bandwidth Internet connection service is based on a satellite dish and a PCI card that resides in the user's PC and receives data from the dish. Outgoing data requests are sent via modem, allowing connections of up to 2MB per second.

Ihug currently sells Ultra satellite directly to consumers in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Wollongong. Ihug chief executive officer Steven Sanford believed though that wholesaling the service would open up new opportunities for the ISP. "It is a logical step for ihug to utilise pre-existing ISP infrastructures," he said. "These rural areas are not effectively serviced by Telstra so ihug will step in to bridge the digital divide."