There is no real system of communications on the South Pacific Island during my crossing in 1997. A few islands had an HF radio with a tower and radio hut. One person from that island was charged with maintaining the communications with Tahiti, the big island in the SP. That person would have to maintain the radio and its assorted apparatus and tools as well as the radio tower, which sometimes would be blown down by a Cyclone (Hurricane in the North). These radios were essential to the lifeline of the island, as it meant they could communicate with passing ships, to hailing medical assistance, and to let family members talk to each other on different islands.
Over a period of time these radios were being slowly replaced by long range cell towers and solar powered phone booths strategically placed on the islands. I noted on one occasion that a phone booth was being put together by a local islander. It came in a single large box and it was a plug-n-play kit booth. What that meant was the anyone could put the phone together without any specific technical knowledge. A large repeater tower was placed on there highest point on the island, even that came pre-built and was flown in by helicopter and dropped into place once a concrete pad had been laid.
Now anyone on the island could place a phone call to anyone simply by dialing their number directly and place a few CPF's in the machine.
At one point once I was back in the US I received a phone call from a friend in Fiji and was told that he could call the US for $0.39 for 30 minutes while at that time it was about $12.00 per mint when dialing direct from the US to Fiji... what a scarm this government and its supporting phone companies are.
Tuesday, June 2, 2015 2:36:00 PM
(c)1995-2016 Phillip J. Seaman