Edinburgh Youth Buz – Wired for Sound
The Edinburgh Youth Bus Group delivers a drop-in youth programme in the heart of the community of North East Edinburgh, which is funded by various trusts and charities. Using a bright yellow converted single decker bus (The Buz) as a mobile youth club, the project works with young people, 12 to 18 years old, who are not normally accessing other facilities and are often socially excluded from other provisions. A now familiar sight in the Northfield/Lady Nairne/Craigentinny and Restalrig areas, the Buz features computer workstations, internet access, a giant plasma screen, playstations and a cushioned ‘chill out zone’. The Buz also has its own sound system, complete with DJ decks, and can be converted into a disco. Since first hitting the road in January 2005, the Buz has proved incredibly popular with young people and attracts an average of 80 young people per week. The Buz needs internet connectivity to provide vital community services to the youth of Edinburgh: they had previously used a satellite system which proved troublesome and expensive to run.
The Buz trialled and selected OptiBond which uses two independent cellular connections that are combined to provide redundancy, super-fast download speeds and low latency. Data transfer speeds of 3.6Mbps (7.2Mbps ready) are possible with HSDPA (High-Speed Downlink Packet Access). OptiBond was pre-configured with a secure Virtual Private Network to provide instant secure data connectivity at The Buz. The fully managed service includes a help desk and remote diagnostics to quickly resolve any networking issues. In the unlikely event of a hardware fault the service includes the supply of a pre-configured replacement appliance, shipped direct to site.
OptiBond allowed The Buz to cut ongoing costs of providing mobile internet access for up to five laptops as well as concurrently streaming audio played through its sound system, something that would have been impossible to achieve with the old satellite internet. Additionally there is no need for the bus to park in specific locations to provide ‘line-of-sight’ connectivity sometimes required by satellite, providing flexibility and ability to deliver services to a greater range of potential residents.
“The system is brilliant, we just arrive at the different locations turn it on and it works. We do not need to wait for the system to align itself, like the satellite, which sometimes took ages which meant the kids got fed up waiting for it.” Gary Coleman from The Buz
“I am delighted OptiBond has proved to be such a success at Edinburgh. It is an ideal system for projects on mobile buses.” Andrew Lambert, MD of EMS
EMS specialises in improving productivity by supplying cost effective, instant secure data connectivity at remote and temporary locations.EMS created OptiBond which simultaneously bonds different cellular networks plus ADSL / satellite. OptiBond is a complete internet solution enabling up to six WAN connections and up to five concurrent VPN connections and operates as a local server to enable printing, file share & network connectivity.