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Beyond the expected

Free wifi live in central Tuggeranong … will you use it?

By Charlotte Harper - 22 August 2016 18

wifi

With the ACT Government today announcing the expansion of the CBRfree public wifi network into Tuggeranong, we’re wondering how many of you are actually using the service around Canberra, and how successfully. Is the free public wifi network a match for your home/office broadband in terms of upload and download speed? Is it better? Can you work in a cafe in Civic as easily as from home using CBR free? If you don’t have home/office broadband, is it your only avenue for accessing the internet?

Let us know in the comments and have your say in our poll.

Is the ACT Government's CBRfree public wifi service a match for your home/office broadband?

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The Government announced this morning that 12 wireless access points are now live in Tuggeranong, servicing the area east of the Hyperdome up to the outside of the Tuggeranong Library and Community Centre plus parkland bounded by Cynthia Teague Crescent.

The rollout continues with further access points to be added over the next two weeks.

According to the CBRfree website, the service provides users with access to 250 megabytes per day over a fast broadband connection. This equates to around an hour of video content, or 50 photographs at 5 megabytes each, or 50 songs at 5 megabytes each.

CBRfree public WiFi is also live in Belconnen, Dickson, Kingston, Manuka, Australian Botanic Gardens and Civic East – from Garema Place to the Convention Centre, round to Gorman House and up to Girrahween Street in Braddon, and Civic West – Northbourne Avenue to Barry Drive across to the ANU and around to New Acton.

Woden and Weston Creek are scheduled to receive the service in September and Gungahlin in October, later than originally planned due to difficulties associated with the supply of power to the WiFi Access points.

CBRfree is also available at around 55 business and community locations, including EPIC, Tuggeranong Basketball Stadium and the Criterium Cycling Stadium at Stromlo Forest Park. Businesses and community centres interested in having CBRfree installed should contact iiNet. Installation is dependent on suitable, powered locations to mount the WiFi antennas and proximity to iiNet broadband infrastructure.

More than 44,900 Canberrans and visitors used CBRfree in July 2016. The graphs below show that usage in 2016 has been approximately double that of 2015. The network is built in partnership with iiNet.

Five ACTION buses have been fitted with WiFi equipment, and a trial of the service is being conducted to generate performance, usage and cost data. This data will be used to assess the business case for further investment.

CBRfree has also been made operational at major events through a mobile platform that can be set in any area where iiNet has access to fibre connectivity. For example, the service will be available at Floriade this year via ten mobile WiFi base stations. It was also available at Summernats and the 2016 Kanga Cup at Southwell Park.

To access CBRfree WiFi, select it from the list of wifi networks under settings on your device then accept the terms and conditions.

In response to users’ requests, an improvement to the login process for CBRfree was recently made so that users would only need to login once a week.

CBRfree graphs

Pictured above are graphs from digitalcanberra.com.au; at top, file image from iStock

What’s Your opinion?


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18 Responses to
Free wifi live in central Tuggeranong … will you use it?
JC 4:40 pm 23 Aug 16

dungfungus said :

JC said :

dungfungus said :

gooterz said :

In theory I could use a few hundred gig on it. I couldn’t do that on mobile.
As well as many people don’t actually have mobile broadband just regular phone plans due to the lack of needing them. Getting access for those people means they can try broadband on the go.
Say your mobile credit runs out you can still send an email or whatever.
Most laptops don’t have broadband. Saves you from tethering them.

Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots.

Would be awesome to see city wide data services. Say like traffic accidents, weather, events, bus services etc.

“Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots………”
Yes, the headline is totally misleading.
The actual coverage geographically is about 1% of Tuggeranong.

Aren’t your posts about the Gungahlin Light Rail also equally misleading? Afterall it will only service 4 suburbs out of the dozen so in Gungahlin! Just sayin…

I have never heard of the “Gungahlin Light Rail”.
If you are referring to what was once called Capital Metro it is now called “Tccs Light Rail Project” and it describes the proposed service as “City to Gungahlin”.
And if you claim it will only serve 4 suburbs in Gungahlin it will be a bigger failure than anticipated.

You are the one always carrying on about Gungahlin and the North, when as I pointed out it is just 4 suburbs and a few streets. Of high density housing of course.

DragonRyda 3:22 pm 23 Aug 16

I sat at the Brew Bar yesterday and logged into it. It seemed a bit slow to get going, but was then fine for emails etc. Although right at the Hyperdome doorstep, I could never log on to their wifi, and the few times i did manage it it never seemed to work properly.

dungfungus 2:17 pm 23 Aug 16

JC said :

dungfungus said :

gooterz said :

In theory I could use a few hundred gig on it. I couldn’t do that on mobile.
As well as many people don’t actually have mobile broadband just regular phone plans due to the lack of needing them. Getting access for those people means they can try broadband on the go.
Say your mobile credit runs out you can still send an email or whatever.
Most laptops don’t have broadband. Saves you from tethering them.

Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots.

Would be awesome to see city wide data services. Say like traffic accidents, weather, events, bus services etc.

“Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots………”
Yes, the headline is totally misleading.
The actual coverage geographically is about 1% of Tuggeranong.

Aren’t your posts about the Gungahlin Light Rail also equally misleading? Afterall it will only service 4 suburbs out of the dozen so in Gungahlin! Just sayin…

I have never heard of the “Gungahlin Light Rail”.
If you are referring to what was once called Capital Metro it is now called “Tccs Light Rail Project” and it describes the proposed service as “City to Gungahlin”.
And if you claim it will only serve 4 suburbs in Gungahlin it will be a bigger failure than anticipated.

JC 11:51 am 23 Aug 16

dungfungus said :

gooterz said :

In theory I could use a few hundred gig on it. I couldn’t do that on mobile.
As well as many people don’t actually have mobile broadband just regular phone plans due to the lack of needing them. Getting access for those people means they can try broadband on the go.
Say your mobile credit runs out you can still send an email or whatever.
Most laptops don’t have broadband. Saves you from tethering them.

Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots.

Would be awesome to see city wide data services. Say like traffic accidents, weather, events, bus services etc.

“Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots………”
Yes, the headline is totally misleading.
The actual coverage geographically is about 1% of Tuggeranong.

Aren’t your posts about the Gungahlin Light Rail also equally misleading? Afterall it will only service 4 suburbs out of the dozen so in Gungahlin! Just sayin…

bj_ACT 10:53 am 23 Aug 16

Considering big parts of Tuggeranong are ranked as having the slowest Internet in the entire country, you gotta take what you can get. Might encourage a few residents to visit the Hyperdome for some Internet reasonable coverage.

http://citynews.com.au/2015/brodtmann-savages-nbn-rollout-plans/

Charlotte Harper 8:49 am 23 Aug 16

dungfungus said :

gooterz said :

In theory I could use a few hundred gig on it. I couldn’t do that on mobile.
As well as many people don’t actually have mobile broadband just regular phone plans due to the lack of needing them. Getting access for those people means they can try broadband on the go.
Say your mobile credit runs out you can still send an email or whatever.
Most laptops don’t have broadband. Saves you from tethering them.

Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots.

Would be awesome to see city wide data services. Say like traffic accidents, weather, events, bus services etc.

“Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots………”
Yes, the headline is totally misleading.
The actual coverage geographically is about 1% of Tuggeranong.

Thanks for pointing that out, I have added the word “central” in before Tuggeranong in the headline.

dungfungus 8:44 am 23 Aug 16

gooterz said :

In theory I could use a few hundred gig on it. I couldn’t do that on mobile.
As well as many people don’t actually have mobile broadband just regular phone plans due to the lack of needing them. Getting access for those people means they can try broadband on the go.
Say your mobile credit runs out you can still send an email or whatever.
Most laptops don’t have broadband. Saves you from tethering them.

Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots.

Would be awesome to see city wide data services. Say like traffic accidents, weather, events, bus services etc.

“Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots………”
Yes, the headline is totally misleading.
The actual coverage geographically is about 1% of Tuggeranong.

dungfungus 8:41 am 23 Aug 16

Kalliste said :

I don’t think the poll chooses the right comparison as far as internet is concerned. Is cbrfree as good as my home internet? Well, I have much more than 250mb/day and NBN so no, it isn’t but it is trying to compare with 4G not home/office internet and where that is concerned it definitely is a good alternative I just wish it was in Gungahlin already (although I didn’t realise it wasn’t in Tuggeranong so I guess they’re just rolling it out slowly) and that the Action Buses wifi was on more than 5 buses so I could pretty much get from work to home on wifi 😀

dungfungus said :

Nothing can be “free” if there are terms and conditions attached.
Who has access to all the names of the people who use these “free” services?
I won’t be using it.

They don’t ask for any details off you, they probably know your mac address so they have a way of tracking the amount of usage your device has used but they don’t request anything but to agree to the terms. No name, email, sign up or anything like that.

They don’t need to ask as you have already agreed.

gooterz 2:11 am 23 Aug 16

In theory I could use a few hundred gig on it. I couldn’t do that on mobile.
As well as many people don’t actually have mobile broadband just regular phone plans due to the lack of needing them. Getting access for those people means they can try broadband on the go.
Say your mobile credit runs out you can still send an email or whatever.
Most laptops don’t have broadband. Saves you from tethering them.

Still needs to be everywhere not just one or two hotspots.

Would be awesome to see city wide data services. Say like traffic accidents, weather, events, bus services etc.

joingler 11:07 pm 22 Aug 16

I really struggle to see the benefit in this. Most people who’d want wifi have their own mobile data plans already. What benefit does this initiative from the government bring?

When I first got a tablet, I simply ducked into the library for free wifi (unlimited per day as well). I see the benefit there as it allows people to study but expanding throughout public areas in the city seems unnecessary with money being more effective spent elsewhere

Mordd - IndyMedia 8:50 pm 22 Aug 16

I use the CBR free wifi in Woden and the City atm (mainly the city), it’s actually a 300MB daily limit, I know, I have hit the limit many times. Usually just with photos I am taking auto-uploading the cloud on the wifi connection. It’s speed is reasonable but not great, but adequate for a free service.

Didn’t know about the iiNet public AP’s, I am an iiNet customer, will have to keep an eye out for those from now on, thanks Grail!

Only logging once a week is a most welcome change, some days I end up having to login multiple times a day to stay connected, it does seem to drop the connection quite easily.

Kalliste 7:10 pm 22 Aug 16

I don’t think the poll chooses the right comparison as far as internet is concerned. Is cbrfree as good as my home internet? Well, I have much more than 250mb/day and NBN so no, it isn’t but it is trying to compare with 4G not home/office internet and where that is concerned it definitely is a good alternative I just wish it was in Gungahlin already (although I didn’t realise it wasn’t in Tuggeranong so I guess they’re just rolling it out slowly) and that the Action Buses wifi was on more than 5 buses so I could pretty much get from work to home on wifi 😀

dungfungus said :

Nothing can be “free” if there are terms and conditions attached.
Who has access to all the names of the people who use these “free” services?
I won’t be using it.

They don’t ask for any details off you, they probably know your mac address so they have a way of tracking the amount of usage your device has used but they don’t request anything but to agree to the terms. No name, email, sign up or anything like that.

gooterz 2:42 pm 22 Aug 16

Turn off 4g watch netflix over wifi.
Its aweaome. However tuggeranong needs more APs. Seems limited to the new housing precinct and around the college. They should replace the mall network to make it a seemless all in one network.

Grail 12:31 pm 22 Aug 16

Ingress and Pokemon Go players will want to switch wifi off in Tuggeranong while moving around. The handoff between APs, and from wifi to 3G is not elegant.

Other than that, iiNet customers can connect to the “iiNet Customer” AP to use their account’s quota at full speed.

I have cut 1GB/month off my phone bill thanks to this. Loving it!

dungfungus 10:35 am 22 Aug 16

Nothing can be “free” if there are terms and conditions attached.
Who has access to all the names of the people who use these “free” services?
I won’t be using it.

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