ISP wireless solutions in areas with no optical fiber (villages in the mountains)

Alberto_SAlberto_S Member, Beta Tester Posts: 3
I have a second home in the Italian Alps and there is only ADSL coverage there. It's very slow, with on average 1MB or less in download and 512k in upload. Whilst exploring my options I learnt about wireless based local operator, called Eolo, that place a small antenna on the house roof and use that to wirelessly connect to the closest optical fiber available. They promise 30MB in download and 3MB in upload. Does anyone have any experience with these kinds of wireless operators? Would the connection be stable? Would that be influenced by bad weather? Are there other different solutions to look at?


  • VioletChepilVioletChepil London, UKMember Posts: 2,474 admin
    edited September 12
    Ok let's poll some experts on this one! 
    @Pooh @kltaylor @Marc @Hronos @MDavide @Mirekmal @nexusnet anything to add on this one? 

    Community Manager at Fing

  • PoohPooh Member, Beta Tester Posts: 675 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I've no experience in anything like that so I'm a bear of little value here, I'm afraid.

    That said, let's take a looksee what Fing has to offer on the subject :)

    People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.
  • HronosHronos Member, Beta Tester Posts: 283 ✭✭✭✭
    Well, I am pretty sure is not "optical fiber", if they use a dish antenna, it probable is satellital or cellular access to the network.
    If is satellite, you may be struggle with "latency" (time past between you ask something to the network and the network to replay: "here!")
    If is cellular, you have the chance to be okay and expect a razonable good experience.
    If some how, they have proprietary antenas than connect yours to theirs (through radio or something else), you could be okay.
    In any case, you will have problems with the weather.
    Keep looking up!
  • GidsterGidster London, UKMember Posts: 224 ✭✭✭
    I suspect Eolo is a fixed wireless provider using WiMax tech. These solutions have taken off in some territories more than others. In the UK, the best know was actually a suburban solution in London called Relish but now Three Broadband. I recall mixed reviews - but perhaps the city environment was not favourable. 
    In reality they have been overtaken by 4G roll-out and price drops. My mother-in-law dropped her 1mbit/s ADSL in the country recently in favour of 4G router (£70 from Amazon) fitted with an unlimited data SIM from Three for £20/mo. She's now getting somewhere between 5 and 20mbit/s. It's not consistent but always better than the ADSL she was using.
    Next time you're out there use the Fing app speed test to see what you're getting on your phone. Try different carriers if you can and see if any can get good sustained rates and offers a reasonable data package.
    There's some more discussion on people's experience of fixed wireless here:

    Head of Product at Fing
  • kltaylorkltaylor Member, Beta Tester Posts: 570 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I apologize for being late to the conversation, but let me offer a few bits that I have had personal experience with.
    In situations like that it's not uncommon for an ISP to offer to you a wireless internet connection, especially in mountainous areas (like in Southern Utah).
    One thing with ISP Vendors here in the US, the nomenclature that they use is "Up To 30Mbps" which means if you only test and receive 15-20Mbps, they're technically, and contractually providing what they said that they would.
    You could always try cellular hotspots from any of your cellular vendors out there, but I think what they can offer would technically be the best for you, as long as you're not looking to do any hard-core internet-related stuff, like gaming and streaming simultaneously.
    "There's a fine line between audacity and idiocy."
    -Warden Anastasia Luccio, Captain
  • HronosHronos Member, Beta Tester Posts: 283 ✭✭✭✭
    @Gidster I was forgotten WiMax! And as you said, this technology was overtaken by 4G/LTE a few years ago in my country also.
    Keep looking up!
  • MirekmalMirekmal Member, Beta Tester Posts: 55 ✭✭✭
    Have no experience myself, but have a fried who provides this type of access in suburbs of Warsaw. It uses directional anthenas with strong unidirection characteristics to secure as stron signal as possible (Not sure if this is WiMax or something else). As @kltaylor mentioned, usually these connections are shared between several users (e.g. one 30MB link shared via radio connection with 5 users), so it is hardly to get full promissed bandwith. On top of this type of connection is dependent on weather conditions (rain, snow) or sometimes season (trees with leaves :-)). So perhaps the best way would be to just try? It  might work quite well... might be disapointing too...
  • MDavideMDavide Member Posts: 47 ✭✭✭
    edited September 12

    Ciao @Alberto_S,

    I live not so far from Milano (along the green M2 tube), but the FTTC cabinet is about 1.5 km from my house and after pushing/discussing with my ISP I finally have a -> 6 SNR profile, against -> 8 original, paying it with a reasonable loss of stability. I have real 18 down and 1.2 up.

    I tried all 4G providers without luck and thought a lot of times to switch to Eolo, but opinions are very different. This technology is very-very coverage dependent and I personally know two people not more than 1 km far from the other, one is happy and the other is desperate. So, it looks like a "lotto" play.

    My suggestion : if your current condition is too unsatisfactory for you try them. Otherwise stay as you are as I decided.


  • Alberto_SAlberto_S Member, Beta Tester Posts: 3

    Thanks everyone for your thorough answers.

    @MDavide so you say that you tried all 4G providers as well. By this do you mean mobile providers, such as Vodafone? They are doing a lot of commercial push in the area but I’m skeptical because the Vodafone cellular signal in the area is already very weak so I wonder how they can deliver a decent home broadband service based on the mobile network if the area is not well covered ? Am I right I’m not considering this as a possible solution?

  • MDavideMDavide Member Posts: 47 ✭✭✭
    edited September 13

    Hello Alberto,

    yes I tried TIM, Vodafone (including its MVNO Ho), Iliad and TRE were not an option (low-low signal and low speed tested with friends' phones) .

    At the beginning the speed was acceptable , about 20-30 down and 5-10 up (forget about consistency, every speedtest is different).

    The bad thing is that after 2-3 days the speed dramatically decreases to 1-3 up and down. I asked for explanations, I was told that it is common for consumer  "mobile"  contracts to be automagically downgraded once you do not move from a certain cell, and of course they cannot grant any speed performance.

    The trick to gain speed again (tested) is to disconnect and reconnect after some hours: impossible, with one modem/sim only: you should buy two, turn them on/off with a certain logic....etc... and maybe one day later the operator changes the game rules without notice.

    The real solution with 4G should be a business like contract with guaranteed minimum speed but the costs are far from being acceptable for my home needs. So I gave up and decided to stay with my 18/1, sadly.


  • keithatpdakeithatpda Member, Beta Tester Posts: 62 ✭✭✭
    edited September 13
    If this is fixed wireless, it is excellent tech, 5 years of experience.
    2 and 3Ghz systems used here in Australia.
    Weather is not a real issue, various aspects of infrastructure bandwidth can be a problem as more users are added, speeds up to 50/25 are possible out to 10klms or so.
    Latency is not an usually an issue.
    To many users streaming is the bigest issue.
Sign In or Register to comment.