e|net, the company which operates the State’s fibre optic infrastructure known as the Metropolitan Area Networks (MANs), has announced that the Kiltimagh MAN has been “lit” or activated, with CMS Peripherals, a leading information storage and consumer product distributor, connecting to their local fibre telecommunications network.
It’s widely accepted that the MANs have had a significant influence on the choice, quality and competitiveness of communications solutions, however, up until now; the lack of fibre backhaul connectivity from the Kiltimagh MAN meant that it struggled to attract service providers. While e|net has been instrumental in bringing competitive fibre backhaul solutions to the vast majority of Phase 1 MAN towns, a wireless solution was needed in Kiltimagh to connect it to the wider national and global network. As a result, Westnet, a local Internet Service Provider, in conjunction with BT created an innovative solution to ensure that wireless backhaul is in place from Kiltimagh to Ballina, where it can connect to the national fibre backhaul network.
On making the announcement, Conal Henry, e|net CEO said, “I think that when it comes to technology, it’s fair to say that people can overestimate the short term value and underestimate the long term value. The same can be said for the MANs. e|net’s experience is that, over time, the existence of a MAN has a vital and major impact on the range, quality and value of communications solutions for businesses and homes. Having activated the MAN in Kiltimagh, we look forward to delivering the same exciting results to the local businesses in the area.” Henry went on to say, “I also think the activation of this MAN signals e|net’s intent to do everything in our power to address the backhaul challenges faced in some MAN towns.”
Joe Kelly, CEO of IRD Kiltimagh said, “This is a big day for Kiltimagh. Not only has Westnet, a local provider, played a pivotal role in the provision of the innovative technological solution but we have seen great support from all the interested parties, particularly the County Council, e|net, BT and CMS.” Kelly added, “We know that the MANs were built to reduce the digital divide and today, with CMS Peripheral’s connection, it feels like that goal has been achieved.”
The Kiltimagh MAN was one of two Phase 1 MANs built in Mayo, with the other being Ballina. Additionally, there are three Phase 2 MANs in Mayo – Claremorris, Ballinrobe and Knock Airport. All of the Mayo MANs have been part funded by the Mayo County Council.