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Novahub boosts connectivity at Cambridge Folk Festival

By Mike Scialom

Cambridge Folk Festival 2019, Simon Osborne from Novahub providing the wifi for the site. Picture: Keith Heppell. (14687187)
Cambridge Folk Festival 2019, Simon Osborne from Novahub providing the wifi for the site. Picture: Keith Heppell. (14687187)

Novahub doubled its capacity for this year’s Cambridge Folk Festival, says Simon Osborne, CEO of the CB1 public wifi, wireless and broadband solutions specialist.

The result was a huge success as festival goers experienced glitch-free, free-to-access online connectivity.

The simple login procedure also flagged up Novahub’s app which allowed extensive access to the programme.

“With almost 60,000 views of our integrated wifi app at the Cambridge Folk Festival, our aim to compliment and enhance the experience of the venue was a great success,” said Simon. “Our thanks to the excellent team who run this superb event, and it truly inspires us to continue introducing simple and fast public wifi access which engages communities, organisations and businesses across Cambridge and beyond.”

Simon, interviewed live by the Cambridge Independent at the festival, explained how Novahub linked not just the punters but also the point-of-sale technology, including tills, with the tracking software showing that, at any one time, around 4,000 people out of the 14,000 crowd were online.

Novahub was founded in 2016, aiming to take business and event wifi to the next level with enhanced connectivity, end-user engagement, and real-time location-aware content.

The Station Road-based firm has delivered its multi-layered enhanced connectivity solution to events at Guildhall and the Corn Exchange using an advanced cloud-based platform with complex database analytics and content delivery services.

Next up is the challenge to expand connectivity within Cambridge as part of a new company, Light Blue Fibre Ltd, which will see the university “unite its technological expertise with the council’s ambition to deliver better digital connectivity across the city and beyond, by making both organisations’ extensive duct and fibre networks available on a commercial basis”.

The innovative joint venture was launched last month by the University of Cambridge and Cambridgeshire County Council to open up new opportunities for full-fibre networks to expand Cambridgeshire’s digital infrastructure. The county council’s available fibre assets include ducting that is already incorporated into the construction of the guided busway, and will be included in all new major road, path and cycle projects following recently approved council policy to include fibre ducting during construction to extensively expand council’s network of infrastructure over the coming years.

The Granta Backbone Network (GBN) is the university’s privately owned optical fibre network. Covering a large proportion of the historic city already, it radiates out to strategic locations delivering high speed, high-availability network services to colleges, institutions and research bodies linked to the university.

“The university has so much capacity that they allow partners like us to connect to that, and it goes out to the busways – and suddenly you have tremendous connectivity,” notes Simon.


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