This morning I blogged about Telstra and their GPRS pricing and I lamented the lack of options available to mobile computing users. Well, Greg was tuned in and posted into my comments section and mentioned iBurst. I think I may have heard about this at a recent SDNUG meeting, but I can’t be sure.

The technology sounds exciting, but unlike alot of the things that I read about, it is available right now in Sydney, although that doesn’t help me, I am based in Canberra. Roll-out in Canberra is planned in August, roughly around the same time as the other eastern capitals.

Pricing wise it clocks in at $99.00 per month for one gigabyte. Thats fairly impressive given that GPRS through Telstra would cost more than $10,000 (thats right, five zeros) per month for the same usage. Telstra would argue that their wireless hotspots would be a better option but they are time based and when I generally consume bandwidth between 7am and 11pm at night at very regular intervals (hey, I’m a programmer, I use Google!).

I wonder if the iBurst folks need someone to try out their service before it goes live in Canberra, I am definately putting my hand up. I’d actually consider this as an alternative to my fixed line ADSL connection at home if I could get the signal strength.

My next question would be what sort of hardware is required. I’m assuming I’ll need some kind of PC Card for my laptop, and I also wonder whether there are SDIO options for my iPAQ.

Time to e-mail them and beg them to put up some kind of tower/repeater (dunno what they do) in the Tuggeranong area. I think Canberra will be a great market for them, just about every second person works in IT workers would historically adopt technology a bit more readily than others – in my experience.

If this stuff takes off then Telstra’s business model may need some changes (I was going to say refactoring – but I think a breaking change is necessary).


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