Superfast Fibre Broadband Case Study: Tim Pestridge, Photographer
Tim Pestridge is a successful commercial photographer working from his home in Exminster. His clients vary from Local Authorities to national companies with images ranging from commercial products to industrial photography.
Having a reliable and fast broadband connection has become increasingly vital to ensure the business remains competitive. Working at locations all over the South West as well as reaching into London and the South East means that Tim travels extensively as a regular part of the job. Clients have come to expect to see images on their desktops within hours of the shoot, particularly if they are based in urban areas with superfast broadband.
Tim said: “I have joked about having access to ‘village broadband’ but the joke’s on me if I can’t meet client expectations. I can turn images around for my customers to see, that’s never been a problem. But when faced with dire upload speeds of around 0.38 Mbps everything comes to a grinding halt. Maintaining my edge when competitors just 2 miles away regularly enjoy speeds of 40Mbps has been a real issue. I have even been known to use clients’ broadband to install updates, the situation has been so bad.”
Connecting Devon and Somerset reached the Exminster area in December 2013. Tim, unsurprisingly, was one of the area’s early adopters and already it is making a substantial difference, not only to how he runs his business, but also to how he juggles the online demands of a modern family.
With 41Mbps upload speeds, Tim can now get images to clients within 15 minutes if the shoot has been based at his studio. He no longer needs to plan ahead if he needs to download software updates or schedule uploads to run overnight.
There are other benefits, Tim can now provide WiFi access to clients in his studio so they can ping images over to their bosses and check emails while he is working. Additionally, with video becoming a growing part of the business but creating huge files, enabling people to preview footage in HD or high quality is no longer an issue.
Tim continued: “I used to get complaints that film seemed ‘grainy’ and then I’d have to explain that I had to send low resolution footage over and that the final product wouldn’t look like that, but it was hard for clients to picture the difference. Increasing file sizes are inevitable in my line of work so slow broadband was a real headache.
One serious bonus to superfast broadband has been how it has impacted on family life and where the Internet is concerned anyway, Tim is no longer ‘Bad Dad.’
Tim explained: “The difference in broadband quality really is changing how my business and my family life fit together. I get more time at home and I no longer have to shout, “Everyone offline,” when I need to get work done. Now we can all go online at the same time, whether it’s for playing games like Minecraft, watching videos on YouTube or live streaming. There are far fewer arguments!”
The Connecting Devon and Somerset programme will reach 70,000 homes and businesses across the two counties by early Summer 2014. It has currently made fibre broadband available to 16,000 premises.