Satellite broadband firm Aramiska is pulling the plug on its service today leaving businesses in rural parts of the UK without high speed internet services.
In a shock announcement, which gives customers little notice to make alternative arrangements, the firm said that it would not be providing broadband services after today.
A short statement emailed to customers Aramiska said: "We regret to inform you that Aramiska and its services are shutting down and the company will be unable to provide you with internet access after today, 27th of January 2006."
The Register has so far been unable to make any contact with the company for further comment.
One reader who contacted El Reg summed up the effect of Aramiska's announcement: "This will have profound implications for small business users who depend on the service for electronic trading in rural areas where landline broadband access is not available."
Another told us that phone lines to Aramiska are jammed but he believes staff were unaware that today's announcement was coming. "I've been on to their technical staff about an email problem for the last two days, and I didn't get the slightest hint the staff knew what was coming (i.e. they were happy and helpful)," he told us.
"Their network seems to have already started disappearing because we are losing access to different sites," said another. "This was a real bolt out of the blue for a Friday considering that we have had no prior warning. We, like probably a lot of their customers are now trying to get emergency measures in place. Although in a remote location, satellite is the only option." ®