eircom wireless broadband – “Sssh it’s a secret” says ComReg

As well as having DSL broadband, eircom has a licence for wireless broadband and is meant to be supplying it in 80 locations in Ireland. So far ComReg and eircom have failed to educate the public as to where these locations are. IrelandOffline managed to get hold of the list which is at the end of this post. So with a national wireless broadband licence, which eircom have had for four years, you’d think they’d have a good deal of customers on it, right? 5000 customers? 2000? 1000? 500? Nope. 200. It’d be interesting to know how many people are near these locations but are instead paying out a fortune for satellite.

eircom are squatting on this wireless spectrum so nobody else can use it. Despite ComReg and the DCMNR being made aware of this, the regulator has said they are quite happy that eircom are fulfilling their licence obligations. Meanwhile ComReg withdrew Smart’s 3G licence after being told to do so by eircom. Different rules for different companies. I’ve talked to a good few ISPs who would love to use this spectrum but alas none will speak out against ComReg. This spectrum would be great for rural ISPs too. In the end the consumers once again suffer with lack of choice and competition.

If you are in line of sight of these locations (They generally correspond to large red and white masts or towers) then you are meant to be able to get this service. A tower can look like this:
eircom FWA mast

The bad news is that the service is a 512k service down and 64k service up. Rental is around €€54.45 per month and installation is €€732.05. It is still cheaper than two-way satellite broadband that many people have had to resort to.

If you apply to eircom and they tell you the service is not available to you, depsite you residing in an area that’s on the list, then I would be very interested in hearing from you. Contact eircom on 1800 503 303 to try and order this service.

Below is the eircom wireless map that the telecoms poodle had on their site which I found and stuck on the IrelandOffline forum. After finding out IrelandOffline was linking to it, the telecoms poodle deleted the map from their website. We had it saved by then of course. ComReg and eircom are meant to have this map available to the public but for some reason they both don’t want you to know. Here it is:

eircom FWA map

Here are all the locations eircom told the Oireachtas they are serving wireless from:

Cape Clear
City West
Dame Court
Dunmurry Hill
Gallow’s Hill
Glencoum Wood
Knock Airport
Mongorry Hill
Mount Oriel
Roches Street
Rossmore Bog
Slieve Glah

23 Responses to “eircom wireless broadband – “Sssh it’s a secret” says ComReg”

  1. copernicus says:

    I think I know the Nenagh mast – I was driving on the bypass there when I spotted the strangest looking tree of all time, very tall and incredibly straight. As I stared at it, it became obvious that buried in the ersatz foliage was a radio mast, festooned with transmitters and other gizmos.

    Simon of the Dossing Times might be from around there, and could possibly get a photo.

  2. Branedy says:

    I’m currently using the Irish Broadband wireless Ripwave product in Dublin, in theory it’s 512k down 100 up. But sometimes it only 70/70 still better than dialup, but hardly broadband. But I can live with it, as it’s only 18.95 per month less than what Eircom charges for line rental for the phone line.

    Eircom is still king of the ripoffs.

  3. Declan says:

    Why do state bodies still insist on treating the private company Eircom like a state monopoly? Oh yeah, I forgot, it is still a state sponsored monopoly.

  4. Damien says:

    No to both Mark. Fixed Wireless Access. It’s hidden on their site somewhere.

  5. […] Damien has raised the curtain on Eircom’s Schrödinger’s Cat – their elusive fixed wireless service which names Bweeng as one of its alleged high sites. I spent the past two years in Donoughmore (north of Blarney) up on top of my roof, plotting line of sight to every mast in the greater Cork area. 18 minutes outside of Cork City, at a height of 180m, a 15 foot pole gave me clear line of sight to just about everywhere. I defied physics by associating with access points as far west as Bandon, and south at Farmer’s Cross, but I was just too far out for any ISP to cover me. My plight led to encounters with other technology refugees seeking any form of terrestrial broadband in Donoughmore, willing to pay whatever it took. And now we are told that somewhere just a few miles away, on a hill in Bweeng, Eircom looked down upon us, silently sniggering as we scurried about with ladders and binoculars and ordinance survey maps and 20 foot poles and 30 foot poles, meeting with ISPs, and group broadband schemes, and amateur initiatives to no avail. […]

  6. Chris says:

    I was offered this product by an Eircom engineer recently – about 6-8 weeks ago. He did say that the responsible department weren’t advertising or pushing the service, but it is available. I need to put a mast up for them, so I can get line-of-sight to their transceiver but I haven’t gotten around to it yet. I was told it would cost €800 install/connect and €45 per month thereafter (I don’t know if VAT is included). I’ve just been told that Satellite won’t meet my requirements, so I reckon I’ll be looking for Eircom’s Fixed Wireless service in the next couple of weeks.

  7. K says:

    Found this blog after googling ‘eircom fwa’ (after reading the article on irelandoffline.org…

    This evening I paid my latest 2 month dial up bill to eircom, I am signed to ‘Eircom Anytime’, but I end up getting fleeced bigtime on my hours over the limit… To the point that I’d nearly be as well off getting an entry level satellite package… All other options are closed off to me it would seem… apart from this one

    Similar to the poster above, seems my local FWA mast is just about viewable from out my window but I never knew this service was available… I might just go for it… 50 euros for always on 512 down 64up would be a massive improvement on on my current 33.6 dial up thats costing me twice that a month… the 800 euro connection fee is rediculous though, does anyone know what hardware is required to make the connection?

  8. rasputin says:

    I am just outside Tuam, 1 of my neighbors has it for awhile now after another neighbor who works for eircom got it installed for them. Another neighbor asked for it, yet said they werent in range( they live next door) and the house on the other side of thier house just got approved for eircom broadband. So they are smack dab in the middle of other ppl able to get it, yet they cant?? and they do have line of sight from what i can see

  9. James Conway says:

    I want to know when broadband will be able to got in Dunlavin, Co. Wicklow as I am fed-up with dial-up, it’s slow, it’s not cheap and it is almost usless.


    James Conway.

  10. Ned says:

    Just called eircom to see if I could get FWA broadband at a house I am moving into in January, and they said that I need the phone line at the site to be with Eircom ( currently with Perlico ). No technical reason for this. So they cannot evan do a site survey for me and it takes 15 working days from order (with Eircom line ) to installation.
    I was told that the service is 3Mb/sec up and 512Kb/sec down. So I have to put up with dialup for a few weeks once I move I guess.

  11. T.J. says:

    I use this from a mast on Sliabh Bui near Carnew .
    It took 12months (no messin) to get a site survey.
    The serice is crap and goes down at least onece a month and usualy takes a few days and phone calls to get back up.
    You cannot use it for web serving games or voip as the pings are too high and upload is to low.
    Avoid at all costs unless you have no other option.

  12. I have ordered FW today,was told would take 28 days,thats fair enough,but I want to know if proximity to the mast is important,ie the closer you are,the faster the setup becomes????

  13. martin says:

    i have being trying to get broadband in rural longford for 15 months now. last mile said there was trees in the way. on the 14 of may i finally got in touch with a company called mediasat and they said i can get satelite broadband in 2 weeks at 39.99 per month with 180 equipment charge and 190 installation hope it works when they arrive . check thier web site http://www.mediasat .ie for cheaper or business pakeges . martin

  14. David says:

    I actually have FWA but got it. Cost a packet to install and server was quite good up to a couple of months ago. The monthly price halved whoopie but then the service got halved, no quartered, no at times non existant. Engineers at Eircom have been great I think that they are working with a system creaking at the seams also the type of wireless implemented in FWA does not seem that good. However its been better than nothing in my location, but I recently got 3 to fill in an a backup when FWA is offline, problems there with the setup though as FTP and SMTP are diffficult through the Three system. I think I’ll keep both as FWA is networked nicely and works now again most of the time but the Three will be useful when on the move.

  15. Stephen Power says:

    I live in Coolnasmear, Dungarvan and my download speed is 28.8kbs. I have just had a long discussion with Eircom with regards to wireless broadband which they say they are not installing. I suggested that they should cancel their licence and allow some other company to operate. My nephew, who lives next door, had wireless broadband installed by Eircom after a battle lasting five or six months. When I mentioned this, Eircom were somewhat taken aback but insisted that it had been installed by a company with whom they no longer dealt with, i.e. a company they had sub-contracted to do the work. When I pointed out that there were three Eircom vehicles at the address to carry out the installation they appeared somewhat confused. I am still no further forward. Any assistance you could provide would be appreciated.

  16. EJL says:

    Living on hill outside tuam so can see the Eircom mast. Couldn’t get the wired broadband so got Eircom FWA installed a few years back on a pilot scheme so all installation equipment was free. However, it has been regularly breaking down in the last 18 months for up to a week at a time. I used to ring the helpdesk but have given up as they insist that I pull apart the modem etc which is a waste of time as the problem is always to do with an unstable network card at the exchange. If I was a cynic I’d say that Eircom can’t be bothered fixing this as they know that I’m stuck with them anyway due to my rural location.

  17. WIDDY says:

    had fwa for past three years and its ok in good weather but breaks down on a regular basis. bad news is that when i ring call centre and give them my information they tell me that i dont have FWA but i have had eircom engineers come out and look at the set up followed by a lot of head scratching and excuses! the good news is that in the past 3 years Eircom have not charged me a penny for FWA system, setup or equipment.
    i love EIRCOM!

  18. The Councillor says:

    I live in Allenwood with a perfect view of the Eircom mast as Dunmurry. When I ordered my new phone line a year and a half ago I asked Eircom about broadband over copper pair, but they said no way, I was too rural. But the lady did say that they were conducting Wi-max tests from Dunmurry, would I like an engineer to ring and discuss connecting. I nearly jumped down the phone in delight. Unfortunately, an Eircom engineer never did contact me, but I have tried unsuccessfully to contact them. So I had to use Leinster Broadband, which was a total disaster. At the moment I’m using an O2 3G modem which is OK. I wonder what the current situation is on Wi-max, I think the market has opened up to other companies to a limited degree

  19. Mike Bardsley says:

    Eircom FW eh! I’ve been living in a new Estate in Cobh for the past five years and we can’t even get DSL. The estate was originally built quite some years ago and has no issues getting DSL, however, only a few houses in the new part of the estate can get it. I remember when the houses were being built I saw Eircom engineers doing a bit so stopped by and asked about Broadband. @No worries’ yer man said, ‘You’ll have that in a couple of months’. Off I went happy as Larry because after sometime on Dial-up you begin to lose sanity waiting for the pings to end before connection actually does take place.

    Anyway, we moved in several months later and once the phone line was installed I was straight on Eircom. ‘Can’t have it’ I was told. ‘Can’t have it there because you’re too far away from the exchange’. I could feel the blood moving around in my head alomost making me dizzy. The hopes were high for some time but now all was again lost. What would I do? I seriously counldn’t consider continuing with DDDDDDDDDDisl-up could I? Yep. I had to. Several calls over the next few weeks restored my faith in Eircom again as I was assured I’d have it by March……………………………..2005. Needless to say I’m still waiting.

    Enter NovaNetworks.ie – The saviours of our 700 house estate. Thank you guys. They gave us a great deal on the install and about 35 euro per month. Not a single moan about them since. I use it alot as I do design work so I’m very pleased with them. Who needs RipOff – Eircom anyway!

  20. Eircom has wireless in Bweeng? That’s bull! I’ve been on to Eircom over the last 3 years since I’ve moved to Bweeng. So much so that Eircom Press office sent me a offical release to say that they wouldn’t be upgrading the Bweeng exchange as it wasn’t worth they while!

    Three now covers 99% of Bweeng and the speed isn’t half bad anything from 0.2 to 4.4 depending on the time of day. (0.2 is better then dial up!)

    I would advise that you get the Dovado router from http://www.commsoft.ie/ mainly because it has the ability to auto reconnect which a lot of the routers in the Three stores do not. Your connection will drop, it’s the nature of 3G so this is a very useful tool. Avoid the D100, I tried this out and it was trouble! You only need a router if;

    1. You want to connect more then one computer or device to the internet e.g. computer and Xbox 360
    2. If you find that you have to put the modem in the attic to get the best signal (this isn’t a bad idea anyways)

    Amocom and East Community Broadband have some of Bweeng covered but when I last spoke with both of them they were having line of sight issues out there, too many mountains!


  21. Audrey says:

    Hi, I spoke to Eircom broadband sales today and was told that the only wireless broadband they do is a dongle. They said they use wired broadband themselves. I mentioned the mast nearby but they just confirmed that they only do the dongle.