Beam Internet provides alternative service to KI

LOCAL CONNECTION: Beam Internet KI technician Damon Hagerstrom with a couple of 34dB 5GHz dishes from Ubiquiti, used for backhaul and some corporate client connections.
LOCAL CONNECTION: Beam Internet KI technician Damon Hagerstrom with a couple of 34dB 5GHz dishes from Ubiquiti, used for backhaul and some corporate client connections.

South Australian company Beam Internet is providing a new alternative to the standard NBN service on Kangaroo Island.

Company founder Josh Helbig and local KI technician Damon Hagerstrom sat down with The Islander last week to explain the benefits of their service.

Beam says its customers have not been impacted on by the rolling NBN outages experienced on the Island in recent weeks, because it "beams in" its own Internet signal from the mainland.

Beam Internet started in the Barossa Valley in 2015 and now grown to cover 20,000 square kilometres across South Australia.

"Damon contacted us two years ago when he saw what we were doing on the mainland and he wanted to get involved in the supply of a service free from the NBN," Mr Helbig said.

One of their first areas of focus was Smith Bay where previously there had been no reliable Internet and almost no mobile service.

Beam has now worked with a number of businesses in the Smith Bay area, including the Yumbah abalone farm, that now rely on Beam's service.

Beam uses a combination of fibre optic and microwave radio technologies to get its Internet signal onto Kangaroo Island and then to customers.

Mr Helbig said the company had received great support from KI landowners allowing them to set up relays on private land.

The company is proud to have reached the township of Parndana and outlying areas with its own fixed wireless network.

Beam was now also providing a 100Mbps service to the Parndana campus of KICE, when other telecommunication providers could not step up to the school's demands, he said.

The company is expanding its service across the Island, with their latest focus being on the southwest corner of the Island, from Vivonne Bay to Flinders Chase and some of the lodges and tourism providers in that area.

Residential users in the current and expanded coverage areas can connect at up to 70Mbps packages for as little as $49per month

Mr Hagerstrom said he had received multiple calls about the recent NBN outages, and businesses including the KI Medical Clinic were able to be online with Beam the day after making contact.

Not only was Beam's service faster, customers also had the advantage of dealing with local technicians such as himself, who were always there to help, he said.

Internet providers using NBN's fixed wireless signal were not coming close to delivering the same speeds as Beam, whose service was steady and not prone to being overloaded, he said.

Beam can provide customised speed tiers on its corporate plans, with multiple clients currently on 100Mbps plans backed by professional Service Level Agreements.

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