New Year’s resolutions for businesses and communities that full fibre broadband can bring

Whether it’s leaping into a fitness regime or learning to play a musical instrument, everyone is encouraged to spark positive change at the outset of a new year with traditional resolutions.

Fresh ideas, direction and motivation are widely considered as integral to contributing to overall individual health and wellbeing, especially when periodically reviewed and acted upon. The festive season and those quiet first few weeks in January provide fertile ground to do just this.

And local businesses and community hubs shouldn’t miss out. As part of our rollout across rural East of England, we’re not just connecting individuals and families in residential homes to full fibre broadband (see our FAQ), but also business premises and village halls – the latter free of charge.

So if you’re a local business owner or an active member of your village community hall, and part of our turbocharged rollout, we wanted to help you take advantage of gigabit speeds and superior network reliability with some ideas for your very own full fibre resolutions for 2024 and beyond.

Businesses – upgrade your cloud storage and video conferencing

Credit: Scott Graham / Unsplash

It’s not just London and big cities where technology is driving growth, innovation and sales. That’s an outdated view that belongs in the history books along with copper-based superfast broadband.

In fact, you can find all sorts of exciting new start-ups and long-standing dependable local businesses in rural and remote areas that are using the speed and reliability benefits of full fibre broadband to their advantage – and, by extent, to the advantage of their local community and economy.

So firstly, we highly recommend at least using cloud storage as a back-up for all your important and archive files that you may have physically stored somewhere right now. It would be even more ideal to switch completely from hardware storage to online storage, although we’d also recommend backing up the most essential documents onto portable storage devices as a back-up.

There are numerous cloud storage companies, from Google Drive and Microsoft 365 Business Premium to Dropbox to Druva, all offering cloud file storage, synchronisation, and collaboration to make virtual computing more accessible, affordable and productive for your business.

Community – start your own Film Nights and Seasonal Events

Credit: Jeremy Yap / Unsplash

From helping to provide essential local services for residents of all ages and abilities to staging entertainment events to give the community periodic feel-good boosts, community halls really do serve as community hubs.

And now that you’ve got County Broadband’s gigabit-capable full fibre network installed, you can elevate your entire offering all-year-round – with a digital twist.

It’s not uncommon for village halls to put on film nights, but now you can stream from the likes of Netflix, Disney+ and Amazon Prime Video without fear of frustrating buffering ruining the experience. And you can even stream in 4k quality if you have the equipment, making it crystal clear for everyone, including those in the back row.

In addition, live theatre productions of West End plays, operas and ballets that large cinema chains are increasingly streaming can be another attractive option for the humble village hall, especially for those who no longer have means to travel to the capital.

In reverse, school plays and live music can be streamed and beamed into the homes of people who cannot attend in person. It’s a two-way interactive relationship that is only bound by imagination.

Businesses – get creative with AI innovations

Credit: Vojtech Okenka / Pexels

Audience insights, marketing, customer services, website live chat and data analysis are just some of the innumerable ways that any business could and should be using artificial intelligence (AI) to your advantage in 2024.

For instance, Microsoft’s Copilot and Designer online products will hugely benefit from the reliability of full fibre broadband, as well as the bandwidth. The former is a form of AI assistance, working intuitively alongside you for a range of tasks, whether that’s website coding or digital advertising campaigns, to help automate tasks and increase productivity.

Others, like Apple and Adobe, feature graphic design tools to experiment with and create a whole range of slick and professional images for a wide variety of uses, such as your website or brochures. There are also speech-to-text, sound analysis and calendar organisation tools to incorporate into your day-to-day operations – before your competitors do.

Community – support charities with innovative fundraising

Take your community fundraising to the next level with unrivalled full fibre broadband.

Charity events can be live-streamed, whether that’s a continuous live video of a static bike clocking up the miles for cash in the village hall, or a Christmas raffle live draw live streamed on Facebook, or even a 24-hour dance-a-thon with the local newspaper involved!

Children’s groups can take advantage of reliable video content from YouTube, while social events tackling loneliness can benefit from national initiatives taking place online or simply using catch-up demand streaming services or high-quality music to provide stimulus and conversation starters.

Whether you’re a resident or business, you can check if you’re covered in County Broadband’s rollout by entering your postcode at www.countybroadband.co.uk where you can also register your interest in finding out more about the infrastructure and service.