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Smallworld Cable Ltd
Type Private Company
Headquarters Registered: Morecambe, Lancashire
Head Office: Irvine, Scotland
Industry Cable Communications
Products Cable television
Broadband
Telephone
Website Smallworld Cable

Smallworld Cable (previously Smallworld Media, Wightcable North and OMNE) is a provider of digital cable television in the UK based in Irvine. The coverage area is Irvine, Dreghorn, Troon and Kilmarnock in the west of Scotland, and Carlisle, Lancaster and Morecambe in the north-west of England, serving over 40,000 homes.

Contents

Overview

Smallworld provides Broadband, Telephone and Digital Television services to residential customers. As of January 2008, pricing ranges from £10.50/month to £75/month depending on the combination of services, which additional cost for premium services and installation.[1]

Products and Services

As a "triple play" cable provider with its own network, Smallworld Cable provides Cable TV, Broadband and fixed line Telephone services.

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Broadband

Smallworld Speedometer on their website

Smallworld provides 3 tiers of service (as of December 2009) of 4Mb, 10Mb and 25Mb download speeds. These speeds are only availble to customers within their cable network footprint and ADSL broadband services are available for customers who want service outwith their cable network. Wireless home network kits are available to customers at a cost of £44.99 if required. Standard installation tend's to be free of charge when Broadband is taken as part of a bundle with other products. Smallworld advertise their broadband as a Fibre-Optic network but they utilise an Hybrid fibre-coaxial network to distribute service to customers, similar to the topology of fellow UK provider Virgin Media.

Smallworld run a "Speedometer" on its website that gives a "Live" view of the average network speed on the cable network they provide but not the internet speed. As of 21st December 2009 this speed stood at 24.4Mbps (out of 25Mbps) which shows the inherent beenfits of cable over an ADSL service, something Smallworld focus on with their advertising.

The upload speeds are 200kbps for the 2mbps, 350kbps for the 10mbps and 500kbps for the 20mbps.

Cable TV

Smallworld provides a Broadcast TV service over its cable TV network and provides over 120 channels including all local Terrestrial services and subscription services like Sky Sports and Sky Movies as well as ESPN. Multiroom services are available at a cost of £10 per month on top of your main TV subscription. Smallworld Cable does provide a PVR service as well.

Telephone

Fixed line phone services are available within the Smallworld cable network and features that you would expect like Caller ID, Call Forwarding and Voicemail are all available. Smallworld offers free local calls to its cable phone customers and its local area covers Scotland, Northern Ireland and "a large section of Northern England".

Home Services

Smallworld provides a wide range of "At Home" services for customers who need assistance setting up their home technology and devices. Ranging from setting up your games console to your home wireless network, they can even setup your new TV or PC and provide standard cable provider services like extending your home cabling (Telephone or Co-ax).[2]

Equipment

The Customer Premised Equipment utilised by Smallworld appears to vary with no official external list available.

Digital TV

Smallworld used Pace plc-branded 4000 series set-top boxes for its standard definition TV service.[1]. The PVR service offered by Smallworld is manufactured by Kaon Media and is an MPEG4-compliant digital receiver with HD capabilities.

Broadband

The most recent modem provided by Smallworld for its DOCSIS cable broadband service was the Motorola 5101 EuroDOCSIS model.

Sponsorship and Advertising

Fibre Optic advertisement from the Smallworld Website, explaining the speed drop in ADSL Broadband compared to their connection type.

Smallworld Cable is the current main strip sponsor of Kilmarnock FC.

Their main advertising strategy follows that of most cable providers around the world at the moment, and that is to describe their service as a "Fibre Optic" connection, which in itself can be misleading as Fibre Optic cable is not brought straight into the home as suggested. The network itself should still be able to cope with demand and service speeds up to 25Mb as advertised.

History

In May 2002, the company's then owner Omne Communications went into administration. In February 2003, it was announced CLS Holdings had purchased 75% of the company, saving it from closure. CLS Holdings subsequently rebranded the company from Omne to Wightcable North.

In January 2006, Wightcable North was sold by its previous owner, CLS Holdings, at a loss of £2.1 million, to Netfonics.[3][4]

In March 2007, Smallworld was rebranded from its old name, Wightcable North.[5]

In April 2007, Smallworld mistakenly broadcast pornography instead of BBC One and BBC Two. A spokesperson for Smallworld apologised for broadcasting offensive material, stated as a consequence of upgrading their systems.[6]

In May 2007, Smallworld stated their intention to provide IPTV services.

In December 2009, Smallworld Media rebranded itself as Smallworld Cable and refreshed the layour of its website, bringing a new logo with it.

On 18th December 2009, Smallworld announced that they had completed core network upgrades and planned to roll out faster 50Mb DOCSIS 3.0 broadband across its cable network. The company also confirmed they had connected the town of Dreghorn to their network, increasing their customer base by around 1200 homes. [7]

References

  1. ^ a b Smallworld Cable Price Guide
  2. ^ Smallworld Cable Home Services Price Guide
  3. ^ Cls Holdings Plc Preliminary Financial Results 2006
  4. ^ Smallworld | Operator Profile | Point Topic
  5. ^ thinkbroadband :: Wight Cable North re-branding to Smallworld
  6. ^ http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/tv_and_radio/article1624344.ece
  7. ^ Irvine Cable company Smallworld Expands Irvineherald.co.uk

External links


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