Vodafone to provide services to rural broadband hubs

Broadband Connection Points will be the first premises connected under the National Broadband Plan.

Vodafone Ireland has been awarded the contract to provide retail broadband services to the nationwide network of Broadband Connection Points (BCPs).

The BCPs will provide free onsite high-speed internet access to the public and will be the first premises connected under the National Broadband Plan (NBP). This will bring much needed connectivity to some of the most isolated and rural communities in the country, including islands off Donegal, Kerry, Mayo, Galway and Cork.

The first 300 BCPs are expected to become available for public use in the coming weeks, with more promised to go live through 2021.

National Broadband Ireland, which has been tasked with rolling out high-speed broadband nationwide, will provide connectivity to the sites. Vodafone has agreed to provide and install the end user equipment.

The BCPs will be located in publicly accessible buildings, such as community centres and sports clubs. Each BCP will have its own focus, with some designed to support remote working and others to facilitate study and digital skills training.

It has been agreed that the BCPs will provide wireless high-speed broadband connection up to 150mbps for three years, or until a permanent high-speed broadband connection is made available through National Broadband Ireland.

“Vodafone Ireland is delighted to be awarded the contract for this important initiative, bringing our award-winning connectivity to rural communities across the country,” said Anne O’Leary, CEO Vodafone Ireland. “Now, more than ever, connectivity is vital to allow us to work, learn and play. The Broadband Connection Points will allow Ireland to continue to build towards a digital society of the future. As we look ahead to a post COVID-19 era, broadband connectivity will ensure that rural Ireland plays a key role in our economic recovery”.