Typically, FIFO villages house anywhere from 20 to 5000 people working on resource and construction projects, often in very remote areas with limited communications infrastructure. Everyone wants to call home to their family when they get back into the village at the end of the day. This instant increase in users and usage soaks up the network, and you experience dropouts and delays.
Busy signals. Random call drops. Poor sound quality making it impossible to understand what your partner and kids are saying. If you try Skype, you get BUFFER RAGE. You just want it to work.
Here are 5 strategies long term FIFO workers use to avoid frustration and stay in touch with their loved ones:
- Make sure your family has a copy of your roster and knows when you’ll be in the village, and when you’ll be out of range or at work
- Check the coverage maps for your mobile phone carrier before you head to opensignal.com/coverage-maps/Australia/
- Schedule your call home for before school/work, on your lunch break or as soon as you get back into the village, avoid the 6:30pm – 8:30pm peak hour frustrations
- Use text, WhatsApp, Facebook, iMessage or Viber messages to stay in touch during peak hour – they need less internet speed in order to work
- If your Wi-Fi isn’t up to it, don’t try to use Skype. It’s going to end in frustration!!
If you’ve stayed in a FIFO village and experienced the above, we can help. On the March IT network, every resident is able to watch Netflix, and Skype or FaceTime their family from their room, simultaneously, without interruption, without exception