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OFTEL - Out to scare the ADSL ISPs...
Wednesday 30 May 2001 14:15:00 by John Hunt

A quarterly research report from Oftel released this morning shows that for quarter 4, February 2001, 81% of people using the internet still connect using a standard fixed phone line via Dialup. A further 8% use BTHighway or ISDN, 5% Digital TV, 4% Mobile phone / device, 7% other (6% of that supposedly cable modem- although it is thought it is closer near 1% and 85% of those who said cable modem were confused between a 'cable modem' and a 'modem on a cable phone line!'). Finally, an abysmal 0.6% of people using the internet in the UK are thought to connect through an ADSL line.. beaten even by people connecting through TV's!!!

This is shocking news for those ISPs we list. They need to get out and about with the advertising! Although in favour of Iomart, I have seen some ads on the tube for ADSL and also Clara demonstrating a presence.

Accordingly, this 'always-on' internet era is going nowhere fast, with the average weekly household time spent online at about 7hours!.. although again this figure is inflated, but due to the 'computer nerds' who live with their screens shaped to the contours of their face. Yes, I'm talkin' to you MrSaffron!!

In the other arena of satisfaction, a whopping 10% of all internet users are 'Not satisfied' with a larger proportion of the not satisfied being from those heavier users (MrSaff & myself ;-)), 37% are very satisfied, and the remaining 53% were fairly satisfied.

If 90% of people are satisfied now, and 81% of people use dialup, where does this leave room for the new higher cost broadband services?! A bleak winter seems to be heading our way!

Potential growth is however truthfully bleak- no sarcasm here..- of the 66% of homes without internet, half of them said that they didn't want or had no need for the Internet. Factors to encourage people to connect include cheaper subscription / call costs, cheaper equipment costs (PC / TV [?]), cheaper installation, and better info on uses.

This report is eye opening to show where the Internet in the UK stands and is heading. Now it is up to the ISPs and- *cough*- BT, to get out there and use this information, to bring the Internet to people more cheaply, and for the team at ADSLguide to educate the uses of the Internet or, more strongly, the broadband arena.

The Oftel document can be found here. Share your comments on this with everyone on our message boards.


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