[isp review] Yesterday the government announced its ambition to deliver a Digital Hub to almost every community in the country, which it claimed would be at the heart of their £830 million strategy to make sure that the "UK has the best broadband network in Europe by 2015" (here). But just what do they mean by Digital Hub?
The concept sounds, at least for now, similar to that of a community owned Digital Village Pump (DVP), which has been pioneered by ISPs like Fibrestream ( NextGenUs ) and a few others, to help bring fibre optic broadband connectivity to rural towns and villages. A hub is not unlike a small local telephone exchange, albeit often almost exclusively focused on digital / internet connectivity.
In essence, a fibre optic cable is carried from a reliable backhaul source outside of town and dug all the way into the village, where it connects inside a small building (DVP) to manage the areas various premise (home / business) connections. Premises can then be individually connected by digging a direct fibre optic link ( Fibre-to-the-Home ( FTTH )), or the service could even be distributed over wireless (e.g. Wi-Fi , WiMAX etc.); sometimes called FiWi (Fibre Wireless).
This certainly sounds a lot like what the government proposed yesterday when it said that, "The hubs will act as central digital points in each community, with high speed connections to the nearest exchange and communities working with local providers to extend networks to individual homes".
Examining the UK Governments Digital Hubs for Superfast Rural Broadband