Monday, November 4, 2013

Internet redux

There has been a good deal of movement on the quest for better internet service out on Aspö. My connection now is OK, but it is slow and a bit fiddly. I've been yearning to improve my connectivity.

During our last visit, we talked with Tony, who told me that Thomas, a fellow resident, and the man who manages the Aspö website, has been using a 4G wireless setup from Telia which he's been happy with. Tony also told me about a similar system from 3, who I have today as a pay-as-you go provider.

The Telia setup is interesting. It's only 99 kronor a month for existing customers. I'm not an existing customer, but Rutger is. Perhaps I could have him get a unit on my behalf and then I pay him back the 99 monthly? Advantages: I could have a constant connection so I could set up that webcam I've been dreaming about. Disadvantages: I'd have to hassle Rutger and I'm sure there would be some billing or provisioning complication or two.

I emailed the nice people at 3 and they responded quickly and in perfect English. Essentially I can buy their 4G unit for 1500 kronor (about $230), use my current account and get nice fast 4G at a lower price. Advantages: I can use my current account and not involve Rutger and his billing. Disadvantages: not as cheap as the 99:- monthly through Telia. There's a potential curveball, though. The router they use is available on the internet for something less than 3 wants for it. Perhaps I could attach a bootleg router to their network? After all, I'm doing it already with the 3G USB dongle.

One other possibility is xcomglobal. For Americans leaving their shores for points beyond, they'll provide a wireless router for use on their travels for $15 per day. This isn't as cheap as any of the other options above for us as Swedish 'residents', but it would be good for traveling or occasional use.

All this is potentially trumped by the latest news from Stefan on Ladholmen, who has been a champion of the Nämdö fiber project. He emailed me earlier this week: "Hi Don! We have just awarded contractor for fiber in stage 1, the southern Nämdö and surrounding islands. Our three islands and northern Nämdö will probably be included in stage 2, which is currently projected, the probable procurement in the beginning of 2014."

So it looks possible, at least, that we could have that super-fast Swedish connection as soon as next year. I would just love that!

UPDATE November 8: I received an email from Nilla on Nämdö, informing me of a December 8 board meeting. She also told me she expected the submarine cable for stage one should be laid before then. So there is lots of progress, indeed!

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