Author Topic: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?  (Read 108399 times)

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Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #60 on: September 19, 2011, 07:27:38 PM »

Tender is a dirty word, never to be used in connection with a pRodject :)

I suspect Cllr Bluh would argue that the council is not procuring goods or services, so a tender is not needed.

Even if they outsource/access council services via WiFi-2 I expect Rod would argue that Capita, (the councils strategic partner), is doing it, not the council.

I would be interested to know whether WiFi-2 started with the council looking for and approaching potential partners, or whether potential partners were beating a path to the councils door...

Offline Mart

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #61 on: September 19, 2011, 08:40:56 PM »
or whether potential partners were beating a path to the councils door...

That would be a very feckin circumspect path.

Could be, maybe, possibly, that if, for arguments sake, that a whisper might have slipped out that if a geezer, hypothetically like, could rock up to a local authority, with, at best, tenuous, knowledge of WiFi, as an example, could grab £400k from a local authority based on nothing more, probably, than a bit of speil and, apparently, dexterity of tongue, then, well, one would naturally wonder what a bona fide IT sort of company could kerching, kerching from said local authority.

Maybe.

Nah, couldn't happen here.
Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #62 on: September 19, 2011, 10:21:48 PM »
I am sure that UK Broadband clapped their 'corporate' hands with joy at the prospect of a deal with SBC and Capita.  UK Broadband (UKB) supplied Proxim’s Tsunami™ MP.11 radios to distribute wireless connection throughout the rural town of Alston Moor in Cumbria. As a result, the entire town is now blanketed with affordable wireless broadband access. And residents are able to get connected to the Internet right away. It has to be said that cable technology has also been used and the cost is £8.99 per month - comparable with almost any other provider, no free Wi-Fi!!!

UKBroadband worked closely with Cybermoor to define the detailed network plan ensuring that the optimal solution was developed to meet end-user requirements.

During the installation process, UKBroadband has provided comprehensive ongoing support and training to the Cybermoor team.

The upgrade will enable all members of the community in Alston Moor to receive wireless service of up to 12 Mbps. The new network uses the 5.8 GHz frequency, so interference will be reduced.

I would add that Alston Moor is not a large town - in fact it's smaller than Highworth. However, it is very rural and allegedly it has been finished and allegedly it is working - I will check this out tomorrow

Offline itspavagain

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #63 on: September 20, 2011, 10:59:47 AM »
UK Broadband


Quote from UK Broadband's website:

UK Broadband is currently finalising plans to build the UK's first 4G LTE Network. It will be a wholesale network designed specifically to provide capacity for Mobile Operators, Carriers, ISP’s, the Public Sector & Partners.

Quote from SBC's Cabinet papers for 22 September 2011:

2.8.1 Make further investment in high capacity wireless data across many parts of Swindon using 4G radio spectrum. It plans to roll out a network using the latest wireless technology - LTE (Long Term Evolution)

Simply 'joining the dots' - so much for 'not naming the new investor for commercial reasons.
If UK Broadband are planning a UK wide rollout then I am struggling to work out what the involvement of SBC will be, other than granting planning permission for the aerials and maybe receiving a small amount of money if equipment is mounted on council property.

I am assuming the council do not receive anything from the existing 3G providers, so why would this be any different?

I am also assuming that current wi-fi enabled laptops and mobile phones will not be compatible with this network.

Offline Greengirl

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #64 on: September 20, 2011, 02:05:00 PM »
Makes carrier pigeons look positively efficient.

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #65 on: September 20, 2011, 02:07:35 PM »
Quote
If UK Broadband are planning a UK wide rollout then I am struggling to work out what the involvement of SBC will be, other than granting planning permission for the aerials and maybe receiving a small amount of money if equipment is mounted on council property.

I am assuming the council do not receive anything from the existing 3G providers, so why would this be any different?

I am also assuming that current wi-fi enabled laptops and mobile phones will not be compatible with this network.

As always 'the devil is in the detail'.

Firstly, UK Broadband has no 'real presence' in the Country with regard to 'city wide Wi-Fi' indeed their presence is restricted to less than a handful of sites. However, they do claim to have a sales and marketing infrastruture along with a technical base.

The import of a town such as Swindon should not be underestimated. In marketing terms we 'tick a lot of boxes' - our demographic structure, earnings per household etc are good indices for a company such as UK Broadband to use in compiling trial based data. In other words we are a first class guinea pig.

Mnay will remember, Mondex and Rabbit - two innovative ideas first trialled in Swindon.

UK Broadband will use Swindon as a trial - in particular they will be keen to install, test and prove their new LTE infrastructure using refarmed Wimax spectrum.

This 'launch' is not expected to proceed until 2012 so don't hold your breath - for too long.

PCCW the parent company of UK Broadband already owns all the available UK Wimax spectrum licenses, which means they have a head start over any of their competitors. But they need a test bed - Swindon is their testing area.  If they can make it work in Swindon then the idea becomes 'portable' to any other major connurbation.

Capita provide UK Broadband with credibility and a contact book guaranteeing them access to every CEO of every authority in the land plus access to heads of Quangos and other Govt agencies.

It is a little 'keen' of UK Broadband to peddle their LTE infrastructure as 4G - it fails to meet the the original ITU-R requirements to place it in this category.


 

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #66 on: September 20, 2011, 07:45:16 PM »
It is a little 'keen' of UK Broadband to peddle their LTE infrastructure as 4G - it fails to meet the the original ITU-R requirements to place it in this category.

If it ain't 4G then could it be wiae or best for an entrprenuer to go into business selling foil hats or foil inserts for caps?

Offline Mart

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #67 on: September 20, 2011, 07:53:04 PM »
So, to paraphrase, Rodders is their pimp.

Except I suspect in this case the normal worker / pimp fiscal arrangements may well be inverted and if anyone gets a damn good seeing to it'll be the Council Tax payer.

I just cannot grasp that any 'player' would perceive the present SBC set-up as anything like approaching a credible business partner, hapless hick with fiscal incontinence more like. Unless this is some kind of philanthropic gesture.

Still, could be wrong.
Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline bobwright

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #68 on: September 20, 2011, 08:00:17 PM »
Doesn't matter how hapless they are it is what is being given away which is of value

Offline Mart

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #69 on: September 20, 2011, 08:52:00 PM »
That's what I mean, can't be just a few malcontents on here that have noticed.
Sometimes I think you have to march right in and demand your rights, even if you don’t know what your rights are, or who the person is you’re talking to. Then, on the way out, slam the door.

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #70 on: September 20, 2011, 09:55:59 PM »
What is crystal clear to me is that UK Broadband needs SBC much more than SBC needs them. However, i somehow doubt that has been recognised by SBC - why would that be?  In my opinion SBC (by which read officers and councillors) have got themselves in to a hole, for the councillors it is a hole of political proportions, failed promises and a lost £400k whereas for officers the issue is competency or to be more precise 'incompetency'  The credibility of some officers to negotiate how to get to the office is in doubt never mind assimilate the complexity of a business deal in which one thing is for sure - the commercial organisation will always win. As for councillors, well their hubris knows no bounds and worse their ability to concede wrong doing (even if innocent of malice) is legendary for its absence!

In short the winners from this deal will be UK Broadband and Capita - one wonders what is in it for at least one senior officer - perhaps if they are unsuccessful in retaining a job with SBC they will be swiftly engaged by a commercial enterprise! 

Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #71 on: September 21, 2011, 05:19:31 AM »
 
The credibility of some officers to negotiate how to get to the office is in doubt never mind assimilate the complexity of a business deal in which one thing is for sure - the commercial organisation will always win. As for councillors, well their hubris knows no bounds and worse their ability to concede wrong doing (even if innocent of malice) is legendary for its absence!

In short the winners from this deal will be UK Broadband and Capita - one wonders what is in it for at least one senior officer - perhaps if they are unsuccessful in retaining a job with SBC they will be swiftly engaged by a commercial enterprise!

Ah, so you've also heard what senior officers are discussing in corridor meetings then?

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #72 on: September 21, 2011, 10:43:44 PM »
Quote
Ah, so you've also heard what senior officers are discussing in corridor meetings then

You mean they do have difficulty in negotiating how to get to their offices!!!

I know that's just too funny for words - but yes i have heard of 'mutterings'  :censored:

Offline Des Morgan

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #73 on: September 22, 2011, 11:10:20 AM »
After reading Coun Bluh's latest column I simply could not resist responding :

I simply cannot allow the comments of Coun Rod Bluh as made in his column on 22 September to go unchallenged. In his column the Councillor states with evangelical certainty that the Digital City Wi-Fi enjoyed a successful delivery in Highworth, nothing could be further from the truth.  The Highworth pilot was successful in only two regards and they were the fitting of the repeater boxes by SCS and the technical achievement of actually proving the system worked. In every other respect the Highworth pilot was an unmitigated disaster; this was clearly obvious in that the Council was forced to vary the performance objectives to allow further investment to be provided. 

Coun Bluh blames the failure of the project on two external issues, the economic conditions brought about by the last government and what he describes as over zealous scrutiny. He very conveniently does not refer to the exceptionally poor management exhibited by the board of Digital City, which incidentally included his deputy as a main board director. In citing scrutiny as a reason for the demise of Digital City he demonstrates a political agility to step away from a failed project claiming no responsibility for anything that went wrong while luxuriating in the glow of the project being innovative and socially inclusive. The scrutiny to which he refers played absolutely no part in the demise of the Wi-Fi project led by failed businessman Rikki Hunt – and Coun Bluh is unable to provide any credible proof to support his remarks. Indeed a chronological examination of the project from November 2009 to March 2010 – the point at which the death of Digital City as a Swindon project came to an end will show that nothing said by critics of the schemes business plan, partnership or delivery had any part to play in its demise. From May 2010 to the present day the Digital City Wi-Fi dream was and remains simply that, a dream.

Coun Bluh casually refers to Mondex but misses out Rabbit – in referring to these innovations he does of course confuse, quite deliberately, the difference between private investors speculating in a business proposition using their own money and a Council loaning £400k of taxpayer money to a businessman and a business proposal which had absolutely no chance whatsoever of succeeding. There is a subtle difference between a gamble and a risk. The Council was unable to determine the risk even when the first phase results demonstrated quite clearly that Digital City were unable to deliver even moderate levels of performance.

Sadly, Coun Bluh continues to perpetrate the hopeful assertion that revenue potential from the new partner, UK Broadband, will help fund key services.  This was an aspiration stated in the Digital City led project as was the vain hope that the council would receive better IT services at lower cost. As before, it’s always jam tomorrow.

Finally, in a supposed Churchillian statement the Councillor at his most eloquent suggests that ‘Taking tough decisions is not easy, and that he and the One Swindon partners are committed to being brave’ – being brave, what does he mean and in what way is it brave to spend other people’s money with such cavalier abandon

Offline Steve Wakefield

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #74 on: September 22, 2011, 11:35:42 AM »
After reading Coun Bluh's latest column I simply could not resist responding :

I simply cannot allow the comments of Coun Rod Bluh as made in his column on 22 September to go unchallenged. In his column the Councillor states with evangelical certainty that the Digital City Wi-Fi enjoyed a successful delivery in Highworth, nothing could be further from the truth.  The Highworth pilot was successful in only two regards and they were the fitting of the repeater boxes by SCS and the technical achievement of actually proving the system worked. In every other respect the Highworth pilot was an unmitigated disaster; this was clearly obvious in that the Council was forced to vary the performance objectives to allow further investment to be provided. 

Coun Bluh blames the failure of the project on two external issues, the economic conditions brought about by the last government and what he describes as over zealous scrutiny. He very conveniently does not refer to the exceptionally poor management exhibited by the board of Digital City, which incidentally included his deputy as a main board director. In citing scrutiny as a reason for the demise of Digital City he demonstrates a political agility to step away from a failed project claiming no responsibility for anything that went wrong while luxuriating in the glow of the project being innovative and socially inclusive. The scrutiny to which he refers played absolutely no part in the demise of the Wi-Fi project led by failed businessman Rikki Hunt – and Coun Bluh is unable to provide any credible proof to support his remarks. Indeed a chronological examination of the project from November 2009 to March 2010 – the point at which the death of Digital City as a Swindon project came to an end will show that nothing said by critics of the schemes business plan, partnership or delivery had any part to play in its demise. From May 2010 to the present day the Digital City Wi-Fi dream was and remains simply that, a dream.

Coun Bluh casually refers to Mondex but misses out Rabbit – in referring to these innovations he does of course confuse, quite deliberately, the difference between private investors speculating in a business proposition using their own money and a Council loaning £400k of taxpayer money to a businessman and a business proposal which had absolutely no chance whatsoever of succeeding. There is a subtle difference between a gamble and a risk. The Council was unable to determine the risk even when the first phase results demonstrated quite clearly that Digital City were unable to deliver even moderate levels of performance.

Sadly, Coun Bluh continues to perpetrate the hopeful assertion that revenue potential from the new partner, UK Broadband, will help fund key services.  This was an aspiration stated in the Digital City led project as was the vain hope that the council would receive better IT services at lower cost. As before, it’s always jam tomorrow.

Finally, in a supposed Churchillian statement the Councillor at his most eloquent suggests that ‘Taking tough decisions is not easy, and that he and the One Swindon partners are committed to being brave’ – being brave, what does he mean and in what way is it brave to spend other people’s money with such cavalier abandon


Des

I remeber Mondex. Mondex was not Money it was Mondex and I recall you had to pay to put credit on your Mondex card, which you could do over the phone (not a Rabbit as that was a complete failure). I remember being offered a Mondex card and thinking why pay to put credit on a card when I have a debit card and or cash in my pocket? I adopt the same approach to those machines that charge me to take cash out. I go to a free one, and likewise I have free wifi now from my phone supplier  that is I pay them for a phone service and they give me X GB free to use on internet and  all its wifi connections I repeat MY wifi is free anywhere in the UK and not just Swindon.

Rod Bluh and Garry Perkins need to get out more, there is a whole world out there to wifi around in.  I hope they will be having their Council supplied and paid for Blackberries wired in to 4G as its claimed to be on 1st November 2011? After all they are so enthusiastic about it the cabinet can be the first users, as they will be taking the decision to ensure that SBC has dividend paying shares in the company ? 
All posts on this forum are my own opinion and do not represent the views of any council or any political party.  :banana:

Offline Alex

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #75 on: September 22, 2011, 04:30:04 PM »
I remember the Mondex trial in Swindon by BT too. They tried so hard to get us to use it but we just didn't understand why we would want to pay to put money onto a plastic card when it cost nothing to use our existing debit cards or straightforward cash.

They ran out of reasons in the face of this and it failed. But I don't believe it cost any Swindon taxpayers anything at all.

Simple logic.

Offline moley

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #76 on: September 22, 2011, 06:54:05 PM »
I remember the Mondex trial in Swindon by BT too. They tried so hard to get us to use it but we just didn't understand why we would want to pay to put money onto a plastic card when it cost nothing to use our existing debit cards or straightforward cash.

They ran out of reasons in the face of this and it failed. But I don't believe it cost any Swindon taxpayers anything at all.

Simple logic.


Having said which this type of card (prepaid credit?) seems to be making a comeback e.g. see:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/8781172/Pre-paid-card-users-unprotected.html

(I've never seen the attraction, and there's an interesting writeup on the same topic on this month's Moneysavingexpert mail digest...

Moley

Offline Chav

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #77 on: September 22, 2011, 07:38:51 PM »

Just for Mr W
"Politics is the skilled use of blunt objects." -- Lester B. Pearson.

Offline jennyb

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #78 on: September 22, 2011, 10:35:36 PM »
Having just attended the Cabinet meeting where all of this was discussed I have come away somewhat bemused.

It would seem that after a failed venture into the provision of what is in effect today... a utility... ( and do SBC plan also to branch into gas,electricity and water??) and the loss of oodles of our cash... UK Broadband are going to offer a service to the Public sector ( or is it just SBC) which the Public Sector will pay for...

Why is this being presented by SBC as a great coup? or am I  missing something??

On another note...  Cabinet members on their Blackberries during Cabinet ...mmmm
It takes wisdom to know what you know and wisdom to know what you don't know and when to call in those who do. Often the people who do know will advise that evidence and research are very helpful when making decisions. Who knows it might even save a bit of money.

Offline the gorgon

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Re: Has The First Chapter Of New Wifi 2 Deal Been Written?
« Reply #79 on: September 22, 2011, 10:52:14 PM »
I remember the Mondex trial in Swindon by BT too. They tried so hard to get us to use it but we just didn't understand why we would want to pay to put money onto a plastic card when it cost nothing to use our existing debit cards or straightforward cash.

They ran out of reasons in the face of this and it failed. But I don't believe it cost any Swindon taxpayers anything at all.

Simple logic.

Good grief you've just reminded me that I've probably still got some money on my mondex card (it's kicking around at the bottom of a drawer somewhere).  Now I wonder what I did with the card reader keyring thingy.  :(

Have to say I liked mondex and I quite like the prepaid cards moley talks about.  Good for your holidays to control spending, they're almost like a modern day travellers cheque.  Apart from ordering sub £100 things from website your not sure about I don't see them being that useful back home.