Do you want free high speed internet?

We are looking to expand our service in to new areas in rural Auckland. Our service is transmitted wirelessly, so we need to place hubs in select locations that have a good view of other properties in the neighbourhood in order to bring you and your neighbours faster broadband. If you are interested in hosting a hub and you have a property or land that overlooks other properties, then continue reading...

Can you host our rural hub on your land or building?




Can you host our hub?

If your property overlooks or is overlooked by other houses or businesses in any direction, we would like to discuss hosting an Ionica hub.

You've probably already been contacted by us or have received a flyer indicating that we are interested in hosting a hub on your property. This is because we believe your property would be a potential location where we could place our hub and extend our service in to your neighbourhood. In return we will provide you with our high-end unlimited broadband package for free.

What does it look like?

The first question we get asked is what the Ionica hub looks like.  In a rural setting it's difficult to give an exact description because it will vary depending on the location of the land or property.

Generally speaking, if we are servicing a small community from a remote location without any power then we will need to install a small mast and solar panels, much like those shown in the pictures above.  If we are serving a larger population, then the site may be bigger to accommodate more antennas, but the principle will be the same.

If we are able to locate our hub on your property, such as on a barn, grain silo, or house, then we may not need any mast or supporting framework, nor any solar panels.  We will attach the antennas directly to the building and connect to your mains power.

We try to blend our installations with the surroundings by using natural looking materials (such as wood frames), or paint the installation to match the bush or building.  Some items we can't paint however, such as the solar panels.

What you need to do

The second question we get asked is what you need to do to run the hub. In short, nothing - we will do everything. Infact, it's a requirement of ours that you don't do anything to the equipment. We just need your permission to use your property to host the hub.

Although not mandatory, we do ask that you keep an eye out for any obvious issues such as damage, wear and tear, or notify us if there is a power outage. None-the-less, our operations centre continually monitors the equipment and power status, so we will be automatically notified if there is a service impacting issue.

We do require you to commit to at least 2 years of hosting the hub. Ideally, we'd like to extend the agreement on an ongoing basis for many years.

What do you get out of it?

The third, and arguably most important, question we get asked is what will you get out of the arrangement. In return for hosting a hub we will provide you with our high speed unlimited broadband service free of charge. We also cover the cost of electricity used by the equipment (approx. $75 per year).

Maintenance and site visits

Although the equipment is self managing, there may be circumstances where we need to visit the property to perform maintenance on the hub. We need to stress that these are normally quite rare and are only necessary when there is an issue we can't resolve remotely. For example, if there is a fault with the equipment, or if there is an extended power failure that has depleted the batteries.

All maintenance can be performed from the outside, so we don't need access to the inside of any buildings. We will always notify you if we need to make a maintenance visit and we will take care not to disturb the local residents or animal life.


Next Steps?

If you wish to host a rural hub, the next steps are as follows:

  1. Contact us (0508-IONICA) to let us know of your interest
  2. Book a qualification inspection
  3. Sign a 2 year agreement
  4. We install the Ionica hub

The whole process from start to end typically takes 1-2 weeks depending on any external factors. Remote / rural locations may take longer due to additional construction and access requirements.


Or fill out our form...

Got Questions?

In exchange for being a hub home we will provide you with free unlimited high speed internet. We will also pay for any electricity the equipment uses (approx. $75 per year).

The rural hub equipment will be installed at a high point on your property. Our planning team will discuss with you the preferred location which could be on a hill, or it could be on an existing structure such as a barn, grain silo, water tank, house, etc.

The pictures above give a reasonable idea of what a rural hub looks like. When installed in a field with solar panels it usually takes up 2-4m2 and is built using wood or a light weight metal frame. When installed on a building or structure, then just the antenna components are present and these are attached directly to the exterior of the property.

The antennas are typically white in colour, however we can paint them to blend in with the surroundings. The same goes for the frame and enclosure boxes, but unfortunately we can't paint any solar panels or wind generator if present.

The height of the installation will depend on the environment and coverage we're trying to achieve. For example, if we need to clear the tops of adjacent trees then we may need to build above those trees, which could be 10-15m high. Generally though, we try to pick sites that have no foliage, or just low-level bush so the mast only needs to be 2-3m off the ground.

If you need the equipment moved, let us know and our technicians will perform the relocation for you. Do not attempt to relocate the equipment yourself as the antenna alignment is very precise and nearly impossible to perform without the correct tools.

In the event of a power failure, the equipment has backup batteries that will provide a few days of standby power. If the power failure is extended, we may need to visit the site to replace or recharge the batteries. Please let us know if you are aware of any power failure or if work is being performed on the electrical supply.

Also, please don't turn off the power to the equipment without first contacting us.

Normally a resource consent is not required to install our equipment. However we will ensure this to be the case, and if not, we will obtain the resource consent from the council.

If you are aware of any new feature on the landscape that could obscure the view from the hub to the neighbourhood, please let us know. For example, if a tree or foliage has grown in front of the antennas, or a new building is being erected.

If you are doing some work on your property that may interfere with the equipment, please let us know before hand so that we can take the necessary precautions. For example, if you're having building work done, electrical work, exterior cleaning / painting, etc...

If you notice that the equipment has been moved or damaged by extreme weather, let us know. The equipment is completely weatherproof and able to withstand the most harsh conditions. However, weather is unpredictable!

If the equipment is damaged, let us know. Even if this damage was caused by yourself, please just let us know so we can fix it.

If you need something to be done to the equipment, then call us. Don't touch or attempt to modify the equipment yourself, even if you're attempting to correct a problem.

We need you to give us a 2 year initial commitment to host a rural hub. This will be renewed 3 months prior to the end of each term and if renewed, you will be committed for a further 1 year. If you wish to stop hosting our equipment, you will be given the opportunity at this renewal point to exit the contract at the end of the current term. You can notify us that you wish to terminate our contract at any time before the 3 month renewal point, although the contract will run to the end of the current commitment period.

If you are planning to sell your land or property, let us know as soon as you can. Ideally, let us know when you are considering marketing the property so that we can make provisions for relocating the hub.

The hub equipment will be connected to the mains power at your property. The power requirements are very low (around 30W) and the cost of electricity would be approximately $6/month (which we pay for). Any specialist electrical work will be carried out by a certified electrician.

Some of our customers will be using the hub you host for their primary internet and telephone service. Obviously we don't want them to have their service interrupted which is why we're very strict on non-interference with the equipment once it is installed.

We hold insurance policies to cover the equipment and any liability caused by the equipment or our staff during its install / maintenance / decommission.

Our hub equipment comprises of wifi access points, network switches, network routers, batteries, and battery chargers. All equipment is certified to New Zealand and international electrical and emission standards and has been designed by the respective field experts to meet best practices for safety. Aside from where mains power is used to charge the batteries, all equipment utilises low voltage DC.

The antenna emits about the same low level of radio signal that your broadband router, laptop, or tablet emits. It's therefore safe to be near the antennas.