What’s wrong with this picture: wifi that’s not up to the job
question from the floor sparked one of the most lively discussions at the business forum last week.
Sheryn Blundstone, of the Peninsula Boutique Hotel, quoted guests’ remarks as to the very poor standard of internet services to the region and how much this was damaging our tourism.
“People who visit want to share their experiences,” she said, but trying to post their day’s photos online was often a frustrating experience that elicited scathing comments.
Businesswoman Wendy Morris picked up on the issue, referring to “enabling infrastructure” – the major projects that add to the things that a region can support and foster.
She said the nbn was a critical part of this infrastructure.
Tourism was our window to the world, and the nbn would mean that the global marketplace became “our marketplace, it means we can diversify and enrichen our tapestry to not only tourism but a range of other industries and grow the marketplace”.
Access to free wifi and internet connections in general are a serious impediment to our region’s success, the executive officer of TDPP, Tara Bennett, later told the Gazette.
“TPDD surveys visitors and the greatest issue they identify that impacts their experience while here is the limited availability of free wifi,” Ms Bennett said. “Advocacy of visitors while in region is a powerful promotional tool that we often cannot harness due the lack of free wifi. Imagine the social media posts that would be made from Rex Lookout, the Daintree ferry or Mossman Gorge if there was free wifi.
“Flowing on from this, operators throughout the region and more particularly in the Daintree are working with substandard internet speeds .
“The nbn rollout is not happening quickly enough, resulting in lowered business efficiency. We desperately need access to internet speeds that are standard in most parts of Australia.”