Connaughton welcomes broadband announcement

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An announcement that high-speed fibre network broadband is to be rolled out to Tuam, Loughrea and Ballinasloe to be complete by the end of next year, was welcomed today by East Galway T.D. Paul Connaughton.

‘The latest announcement includes Tuam, Ballinasloe, Loughrea, Galway, Roscam and Ballymoneen, which sees a total of nine locations in county Galway included in the fibre roll out plan. Last month Oranmore was included in Phase IV of the roll out plan, and Mervue and Shantalla were included in previous phases.

‘High speed broadband is vital for businesses in East Galway and I have been contacted in recent months by many business owners who feel that their businesses are hampered by the lack of broadband. Hopefully many businesses in Tuam, Ballinasloe and Loughrea will benefit from broadband before the intended completion date of December 2014.

‘While this announcement is a significant step forward for towns such as Tuam, Loughrea and Ballinasloe, many other towns and businesses across the region need high speed broadband and I will continue to work to ensure that the fibre network is expanded further throughout East Galway.

‘Huge growth in internet accessible devices such as smart phones and tablets, as well as the growing popularity of on-demand TV and video has resulted in peak internet traffic on eircom’s network growing from 1 gpbs in 2005 to over 50 in 2013.

‘Internet infrastructure is an increasingly important factor in terms of attracting inward investment to a region and today’s announcement by eircom will significantly boost the ability of the towns involved to attract much-needed inward investment. The roll out of high speed broadband not only benefits business, but also is of great advantage in the provision of education, health services and other public services.

‘Internet is going to become an increasingly integral part of all of our lives; at the moment there are 1.6 million broadband subscriptions in Ireland and the average time spent online by internet users mirrors time spent watching TV. Ireland has one of the highest per capita levels of subscriptions to facebook in the world and now over half of mobile phone users are accessing the internet from their phone. People in East Galway must not be hampered by geography in accessing high-speed broadband, without it, it will become increasingly difficult to play a full part in the knowledge economy,’ concluded Deputy Connaughton.