Australian wireless networking company Zetifi has issued a call out for farmers in New South Wales and northern Victoria to express their interest in trialling Wi-Fi calling as part of a Federal Government-backed program to provide improved phone services for rural and remote areas.
Wagga Wagga-based Zetifi was recently announced as one of the first three grant recipients under the Morrison Government’s $2 million Alternative Voice Services Trial (AVST) Program, which aims to find new ways to deliver voice services within NBN Co’s fixed wireless and satellite footprints. It seeks to identify new providers and the potential for alternative technologies to provide better services and functionality.
Zetifi Founder and CEO Dan Winson (right) said that instead of relying solely on their current mobile, satellite or high-capacity radio concentrator (HCRC) coverage to make voice calls, Zetifi will provide a multi-carrier connection so that triallists can confidently use Wi-Fi Calling to make calls, even when the household has poor or no mobile cellular coverage.
While Wi-Fi Calling is not a new innovation, the maturity of the technology had made it an attractive alternative to traditional voice services for those living in areas with poor or patchy mobile coverage, he said, and meant they were now less reliant on their proximity to mobile towers and other network infrastructure.
“We’re keen to hear from farmers who are interested in taking part in these trials,” he said.
“By providing these farmers with a Zetifi Wi-Fi network, which enable them to make Wi-Fi calls, we’re aiming to prove that our technology can not only provide a solution to poor mobile coverage but provide a stable and reliable replacement for the legacy radio and copper network in rural and remote areas.”
The program will provide 50 farmers with access to a fully subsidised hardware installation and a 12 month subscription to Zetifi solutions to help them access better connectivity for Wi-Fi calls. 40 farmers will receive a ZetiBase, which predominantly provides indoor Wi-Fi for areas where weak mobile signals cannot penetrate the residence. The remaining 10 trial participants will be provided with a ZetiCell, a longer-range solution for areas with very poor coverage with a 300m radius of outdoor Wi-Fi and the option to extend connectivity to sheds, yards and across the farm.
The company is looking to have all 50 units installed and ready to use by May 31.
The AVST Program will last for 12 months and participants will be able to continue their service and subscription at the conclusion of the trial.
To register your interest in receiving a Zetifi solution as part of the AVST Program, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1300 093 711. For further information about Zetifi solutions visit https://zetifi.com/.