Ultra Fast Broadband has become a necessity for digital businesses who create products for the digital world. Whether it’s building websites, backing up rich media assets such as video or sharing digital photography work the demand for uncapped access has never been greater. “Unfortunately, the availability of 21st century broadband speeds remains limited to some addresses on some streets and usually at some time in the future with all of them becoming quite expensive when you go over your monthly bandwidth cap.” says Ryan Jennings from Tweet2eat Hawke’s Bay.
“We want to put Hawke’s Bay ahead of the rest of New Zealand, so we’re launching a 100Mb uncapped Internet service for digital business people to access at selected Tweet2eat cafe’s. This is not something that’s available anywhere else.” says Ryan. “Imagine backing up to the cloud your most important digital assets, all while enjoying a flat white in the Hawke’s Bay sun on a Friday afternoon.” says Ryan. There are over 21 different media agencies and photographers in Hawke’s Bay with over 100 employees working in the digital media space. “Some of these businesses such as Mogul are fortunate to be located where
fibre has been laid. They know it’s a competitive advantage for them. Bandwidth is the new destination. We want to be inclusive and grow that advantage to everyone growing Hawke’s Bay’s digital economy.” says Ryan. Cafe’s benefit too. They already know that local business people are the mainstay of their daily business, so giving their best clients another reason to return makes sense. As summer approaches, cafe’s will be able to open up the service to backpackers and tourists alike creating an additional revenue stream over the summer months. “With tourists increasingly travelling with high end cameras, ipad’s and mobile devices, the need to synch with services like iCloud while travelling have already become the norm overseas.” says Ryan.
So why is Tweet2eat getting involved? “We’re about connecting foodies with local restaurants and cafe’s. Increasingly I have seen the frustration of digital businesspeople being disconnected from the digital resources they need while doing business at the favourite cafe’s. I wanted to change that.” says Ryan. Tweet2eat isn’t doing this alone. Tweet2eat has partnered with Modica Group to provide the fastest possible internet combined with uncapped international capacity. “As Modica grows out it’s global ISP business, we are left with a lot of spare inbound capacity. Ryan came to us and told us what he wanted to do in Hawke’s Bay, and well, we wanted to support it.” says Modica Group CEO Stu Wilson. Unlike free wifi that is uncontrolled, access to 100Mb Internet will be controlled and accessible thanks to Tomizone on a membership only basis by businesses that are driving our digital economy. “Cafe’s tell me that free wifi makes it hard for them to manage their table turnover which can affect profitability. We wanted to put them back in control.” says Ryan.
What’s to stop people downloading huge volumes of pirated material? “The digital agencies all have pretty clear employee guidelines that have this covered.” says Ryan. So which cafe’s will be offering it first? We have 6 cafe’s across Hastings, Napier, Havelock North, Taradale and Ahuriri that are ready to connect, the first one to go live will depend on where the demand comes from digital employees. And the price? Initially it will be $50 per month per digital business employee and as more people sign on we’ll drop the price and buy more international capacity. We want everyone to be able to access 100Mb Internet at the closest cafe to them in Hawke’s Bay. This is a social enterprise – all profits will be reinvested in delivering the fastest uncapped Internet possible. What’s the service called? “The working title is Banquet Internet while we select an anchor sponsor who would like to secure the naming rights.” says Ryan. It’s not hard to start to see smart cafe’s become the same hub of startup innovation and a collaboration of ￼￼￼ideas that is central to a thriving economy. Sharing ideas over coffee is an ingrained human behaviour, doing business at the speed of light should be far more instinctive than it is for business in Hawke’s Bay.