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Closure countdown for broadband network

Published: 01/03/2020

Connected Communities subscribers encouraged to make move to new broadband service.

Remaining customers on the Connected Communities wireless network are being reminded to move to another broadband service this month if they want to stay online.

The ageing wireless network, which over the last 15 years provided much needed broadband services to GP practices, schools, homes, and businesses is closing on 31 March at midnight.  All remaining subscribers are being advised to look at options before the switch off.

Subscribers have all been contacted by HIE, which owns the network, and internet service providers Scotnet, who run the Hebrides.net service. 

Donnie Morrison of HIE’s digital team has been helping local communities look at available options. He said: “Connected Communities was introduced in 2005 to provide services for island communities where no mainstream broadband was planned. With the investment in fibre, and availability of high speed satellite and 4G mobile, we’ve seen a significant reduction in demand. It’s no longer affordable for HIE and our partners to run it with public funds. It has reached the end of its operable life.”

“We know changing can be daunting, especially as many customers may have only ever used Connected Communities for their home broadband. We can help people look at their options, and with 30 days to go, we’d encourage customers to think about this as soon as possible.”

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