Beth Dolan already enjoyed the benefits of Hardy OneNet’s faster Internet speeds at her job as executive director of the Hardy County Convention and Visitors Bureau. So when the service became available at her home, she immediately signed up.
“It’s lightning-fast,” she said recently. “I was missing the speed from my office whenever I was at home.”
The Dolans signed up for Internet and telephone at their Duke Lane home outside Moorefield and became the 500th customer to have OneNet installed. Mrs. Dolan and her husband Tony have three children living in the home. OneNet offers standard Internet packages ranging from 5 megabytes per second download and 2 Mbps upload, 15 Mbps download and 7 Mbps upload, and 25 Mbps download and 10 Mbps upload. Customers can choose among Internet and telephone service, television and telephone service, or all three.
“The speed of the Internet is so much better and so much faster,” she said. “There is no lull in the speed at all.”
Her family is active on the Internet and all five household members can be on the web at the same time, she said. Lauren, 19, does schoolwork through Eastern West Virginia Community and Technical College online; 11-year-old Gavin is an online gaming enthusiast on Xbox; and even 2-year-old Jacob plays games or watches shows for younger children. All of this goes on while Mrs. Dolan and her husband might be watching movies through Netflix.
Hardy OneNet is a network that provides fiber-optic cable connections directly to residents’ homes. Hardy Telecommunications is building the network throughout Hardy County with the help of a $32.7 loan-grant combination through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utilities Service broadband stimulus program.
The capabilities of fiber-optics in the telecommunications industry makes it possible for Hardy OneNet to offer much faster Internet speeds and high-definition digital television in addition to voice service. Derek Barr, director of customer services and sales, marketing and human resources at Hardy, said the focus of the project is to show that a rural area like Hardy County, which is costly to serve, can still have a modern telecommunications network like those in metropolitan areas.
“While the OneNet fiber network makes it possible for us to offer television for the first time, the most stunning thing to me is the Internet speed,” he said. “You really can’t describe it in speeds or download times. You have to experience it and see how much faster it is to stream or download a movie through Netflix or Amazon Prime.”
Mrs. Dolan said she was familiar with OneNet’s fiber-enhanced speeds at the Convention and Visitors Bureau Office on Main Street in Moorefield.
“If I download the Moorefield Examiner from its online site, it now downloads in less than a minute,” she said.
Her work requires her to be on the Internet often, and her productivity has increased tremendously with OneNet, whether she’s checking email, engaging in social media for the CVB or uploading and downloading large files.
“It’s pretty important for me to have fast Internet,” she said.
Mrs. Dolan said she also likes Hardy Telecommunications because they’re a local company and they respond quickly to any issue.
“If we ever need anything, I can pick up the phone and talk to someone at Hardy, and they respond right away,” she said.