Slow internet speeds remain a bugbear for many in the UK, even as the government touts its ongoing funding of rollouts of services across the nation.
But life in the slow lane proved so intolerable for one Wiltshire farmer that he took it on himself to solve the problem with a homemade 4G adapter and his own fibre-optic lines.
As the BBC reports, Richard Guy, from Salisbury, built his own 4G adapter using an assortment of components, including solar panels to power the unit, and then ran fibre-optic cable from the unit to his home.
Guy explained that it works because a 4G signal can be attained in one area of his farm. He put a mast in the ground and attached a 4G adapter to the top, housed in a toolbox to keep it safe. From here he ran fibre-optic cables back to his home 1,100 meters away. A solar panel at the top of the mast ensures that the 4G adapter is always powered up.
This has completely transformed his internet experience, according to Guy, making it possible to do everything from online shopping to finding key government information.
“The 0.8Mbps I had before was very slow for following the pages of Amazon or the Defra website, but with this it’s like lightning. It's like selling a Morris Minor and buying a Lamborghini.”
Suggesting that there may be a little bit of PR-wizardry behind the scenes, Guy also revealed that he intends to take his setup to market with a new business called Agri-Broadband.
“It’s something farmers can take part in. They dig the trenches and build the tower and we apply the technology to it and it all works just fine,” he said.
The idea could well catch on, given that 4G avaiability in remote areas continues to increase and that, for most farmers, digging up their own land is something they do on a fairly regular basis.
However, for the average homeowner or business in a remote area, it may not be the best idea to start churning up public highways and running your own fibre lines.
Banking Trojan that 'wreaked havoc' in Europe and the US in 2014 may have absorbed NSA exploits to spread via network security flaws, not just phishing
Leaks in the run-up to Samsung Galaxy Note 8 launch pretty much gave it all away
Sonos Play 1 speakers cost £180, but customers could suffer if they don't agree changes to privacy policies
US government 'cyber czar' admits briefing against Kaspersky, but doesn't offer any firm evidence