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Speed of 4G improves life in Aurukun

Fast business transactions, speedy download times and reliable mobile phone calls are making Aurukun a happier place to live.
Aurukun Shire Council Mayor Dereck Walpo said the community had caught up with the modern world in the past three months since Telstra had connected Aurukun to an underground fibre optic network.
“Bank transactions which used to take up to 30 minutes to process can now be done in less than two minutes, nurses can enrol in training courses that they couldn’t previously access and business owners no longer have to do their online ordering at 4am to successfully complete transactions,” he said.
“Frustration with the internet speed was a constant problem in our community and the police say they are getting less calls as a result.
“As well as improving Aurukun’s capability to do business, reliable internet has also created new entertainment options for our youth which keeps them happy and busy.”
Island & Cape store manager Aaron Blyton said eftpos transactions and the automatic teller machine were now reliable after years of losing connection at least twice a day nearly every day.
“We can order online faster and load people’s fuel cards in a matter of seconds which avoids frustration and makes us more productive.
“It is great for the children who can now access things like Netflix. In fact, we now sell more Playstation S4 and Xbox One devices than the models that don’t require internet connection now.”
Acting Officer in Charge at Aurukun Mark Murray said police communication had improved with no lag time when making mobile calls.
“We have had jobs in relation to internet issues, but now there is less frustration within the community with the internet speed, there are less calls to police,” he said.
“The staff are much happier because it is easier to keep in touch with friends and family, so hopefully that will help with retention rates.”
Aurukun State School Principal Mike Ennis said the school community had noticed a huge improvement in the speed of their mobile technology, but was waiting for the school’s copper cable to be replaced.
“Telstra has assured us that they will be in our community to do the trenching and fibre optic cable laying as soon as road conditions allow,” he said.
“We are all very excited by the promise of connecting to the high speed 21st century information super highway as this will open up enormous opportunities for learning for all our students.”
Mayor Walpo said many of the fly-in and fly-out agency workforce were saying Aurukun’s internet speed of 85Mb/sec was much better than what they get at home in Cairns.
“This Council’s legacy will be the improved communications we have achieved for our community and I thank Telstra, the State Government, our senior staff and the agencies in our community for working with us to make this happen,” he said.