The Community Broadband Organisation is a group of local people from around Plaistow whose wish is to make the power of broadband technology available to ALL residents on the Plaistow telephone exchange. It is an open shop, whereby anyone may join and assist in the goal of obtaining better communication links for internet users of the village.
There is no need to have an understanding of the technology involved, far from it. All that is needed is the basic desire to for having a good quality service rather than being dumped with a second rate, take it or leave it product.
The aim of the organisation is to obtain the best service at an affordable price. Currently, the best available to Plaistow via the existing telephone lines is a system called ISDN. There is again, no need to understand how it works just that basically, it supplies a service whereby you can use the internet and telephone at the same time. However, it is quite pricey in comparison with other products. Typically, using the internet with an ISDN service costs around £45 per month. This is using the service at a speed of 64 kilobits per second (kbps).
Most commonly used internet service at the moment is generally referred to as 'dial-up'. With dial-up the best speed one can get is 56kbps. Because of the way this system works, it is rare to get more than 45kbps or worse. There is no guarantee that your service will get more than 1kbps though it is rare for it to be below 30kbps. The pricing is reasonable, with somewhere between £10 and £15 a month being the typical cost. Some Internet Service Providers (ISP's,,, the people who supply the link for your computer to access the internet) put in restrictions on how long you can use the internet each month, i.e. 100hours. After the hours allowed have been used, you may well have additional charges. These charges vary but are usually that if you are on the internet, it is the same as making a local telephone call.
ADSL (big one this,,, Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line) is commonly termed as 'broadband'. Whereas 'dial-up' works around 40kbps and ISDN at 64kbps, broadband works at 512kbps (subject to conditions). Obviously, this is in a non-technological word 'GOOD'! It is the aim of the Plaistow Community Broadband Organisation to be able to get a system set up, whereby we have access to such a service.
There are alternatives to ADSL, such as systems using satellites. The Plaistow CBO intend to look at what these systems have to offer as there may very well be certain advantages over ADSL not yet discovered.