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Super-fast broadband of 25Mbps to reach 90% by 2015
Friday 13 May 2011 10:38:44 by John Hunt

Yesterday, speaking at the Race Online 2012 conference, the Culture secretary, Jeremy Hunt, set out some specific goals that the UK should meet to ensure we are competitive in the coming years with our broadband services. A previous aim of "best superfast broadband network in Europe" by 2015 has been qualified to say that 90% of the UK should have access to 25Mbps broadband by this date.

This is a key milestone that may prove tough to reach. BT proposed that they could deploy super-fast broadband to 90% of the country by 2017, two years after the government proposal, but this would only be possible if they were given access to the full £830 million of funding that has been assigned up to this date. The key point may be in more focused local deployments were using a more appropriate access technology could help drive efficiencies and cost savings when compared with a national one-size-fits-all fibre-to-the-cabinet project.

"If we press ahead with expansion of superfast capabilities, we can put the UK in the global fast-lane. If we fail to do so then we apply a handbrake to growth precisely when we need to power ahead.

"We have set aside the money and the expertise to make this happen. Now local authorities need to step up to the plate by bringing forward their own plans, setting out how they will deliver this level of ambition,"

Jeremy Hunt, Culture Secretary

The government are relying on local authorities to guide investment in their local areas through bids to BDUK for funding. However, many local authorities have already progressed plans and put bids to BDUK which might fall short of the target that has now been set. Wiltshire Council have for example recently put in a bid for funding but with a goal of 85% coverage of faster broadband, which they may need to adjust to meet the targets that have just been set out.

Hunt also announced that Ofcom would publish an annual league table of local authorities, starting next month, which will show how they are progressing in deploying broadband to the area. New pilot schemes for broadband deployments with funding from BDUK will be announced on the 27th of May.

Comments

Posted by checker over 6 years ago
25mbs is not "superfast" just a marketing ploy from BT the state telecomms monopoly.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
fast, superfast, the terms are meaningless anyway.

25Mbps however is a nice figure for 90% to have though, not sure its achievable by 2015 though.

So now its up to local authorities (who are losing lots of money btw) to get investment locally (good luck, tightening belts 'n' all) and then ask for money from a very limited pot?

Good Luck

The government are saying one thing but have no money anywhere to do it
Posted by gbswales over 6 years ago
The figures on the map should be taken with a pinch of salt as they do not reflect what is actually, rather than theoretically, available.
My area comes up in the higher band but there is only one provider (LLU) offering this and that is Talk Talk which I am certain would fail to deliver anything like this and who I have to sign up with for a long period just to find out! My service and the others available are all ADSL2 and at the moment I get around 4-5Mbs fairly consistently.
Until there is competition in all areas in the high speed market then there will be little incentive to improve
Posted by Legolash2o over 6 years ago
I'm assuming this means 25Mbps MINIMUM? I agree with GMAN, i don't think this will be achievable before 2015.

It's probable means 25Mbps packages available but it's fine to work at 2Mbps+...
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@checker

eh? this is the culture secretary's technobabble, nothing to do with BT. Hence the arbitary and nonsensical value of 25MB. No one offers 25MB...
Posted by opticalgirl over 6 years ago
I expect they are talking headline figures, because otherwise it sounds totally unachievable, but I'd love to be wrong.
Posted by opticalgirl over 6 years ago
ADSL2+ is "up to" 24Mbps, I expect that's why they setted on 25Mbps.
Posted by chrysalis over 6 years ago
2017 is a bit of a joke why so slow? 6 years to deploy a speed that will be obselete in 2017. The sad thing is I bet many areas will still be stuck on adsl then.
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
Without proper government support (sic. France E500m per year) rollout will be slow, because no one has the cash to do it.
Posted by Alchemyfire over 6 years ago
90% of the population, or 90% of geographic coverage?
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Hopefully population! I'd hate to see those rabbits and hedgehogs getting 25Mbps before me
Posted by Dixinormous over 6 years ago
Population. Don't have broadband of any description apart from satellite to 90% geographically.
Posted by spetznaz over 6 years ago
Sounds like a headline figure rather than the actual speed, by 2015 most market 1 exchanges will have WBC available I would have thought, but how many lines will get anywhere near the full 24mbit..

Posted by timmay over 6 years ago
Well this is both bad and good news. Good news is 25Mbps is easy to do with FTTC, Wireless or Mobile (LTE). Bad news is that going down the easy route doesn't provide a network that is future-proof. I doubt I'd bother switching from ~13Mbps to ~25Mbps, it's not that much of an increase.
Posted by timmay over 6 years ago
100Mbps is what I'd call Super-fast.
Posted by NilSatisOptimum over 6 years ago
No chance!
Posted by chris6273 over 6 years ago
I think giving BT access to that pot would be a VERY VERY VERY BAD Idea! Look what they have done already - deployed Infinity in areas with LOTS of providers already (Including Virgin) which is clear proof they would use that money to help them role out Infinity to areas which already have sufficient service!

BT asking for things like this makes me laugh! They have done bugger all out in my area since 2003 (or 2006 if you count the ADSLMax 'work').

Press ahead and give the pot to a company which is actually going to spend it on the FINAL THIRD!
Posted by WalterWillcox over 6 years ago
I wonder why symmetrical FTTP services aren't being included in the target ?
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@chris6273

What proof are you talking about. Please clarify exactly what evidence you are talking about. If you mean they are spending their own money to compete as they see fit... because if that is the case that isn't proof.

Final third money would be ring fenced on exchanges/areas agreed with BDUK, they couldn't spend it elsewhere and neither oculd any other orgnisation bidding for BDUK money.
Posted by spetznaz over 6 years ago
The money should go to whoever covers the largest area simple as that, which is why I think much of it will go to wireless providers rather than fixed line.

Personally I think BT should get the money if they can truly deliver 90% FTTC and then more should be found for wireless service to the most remote areas, unless Virgin/Fujitsu and co put their money where their mouth is and come up with something better of course..

Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
looks like just more peeps without a clue saying big words and expectations....

The reason most places cannot hope to get those speeds is the **ancient** cables in the ground and the equally ancient BT organization!! They are promoting 6 or 7 year old tech as if it was new - Easynet and others did it in 2005..

Like the USA, this organization needs to be replaced by smaller ones so that lines can be properly run and maintained properly...
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Arrrr of course... that's what should happen /rolleyes
Posted by russianmonkey over 6 years ago
Re Comnut.

Old cables wouldn't make it any better, but any form of copper cabling on xDSL services would cause the speeds to drop off depending on distance.

Also, why are people so against BT getting all or a share of the BDUK money?
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Because they made a profit through cost/process savings this year and people think they should give it all away
Posted by russianmonkey over 6 years ago
Ahhh, so if I cut costs from my own personal budget, i should immediately spend that?

Why don't people realise it's all about profit + ROI for shareholders.
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
russianmonkey: I see you do not understand... do you see mention of copper anywhere else?? I doubt you are even in UK, or even understood the other comments...

I suppose you would be happy for Russia to limit speed to 5 meg, 'cos they cannot afford more' ??
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
this might interest:
http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/2070819/calls-break-telecoms-louder
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@Comnut

You do realise the reason why BT couldn't roll-out fibre was because OFCOm/Gov had to give it permission and it didn't receive permission till 2009... at which point it started rolling out fibre...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/7919904.stm

The copper legacy is all down to USO, OFCOM and UKgov dilly dallying....
Posted by spetznaz over 6 years ago
This is really tedious listening to BT bashers vs BT fan boys. Never mind where the blame lies we need to look forward not backwards.
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
Unfortunately for that we need a progressive regulator that is capable of making decisions in something less the geological time scales and a supportive Gov which is prepared to put it's wallet where it's mouth is. OFCOM prevented BT rolling out fibre in the 80's, allowing them only two years ago. No Gov has really matched our Euro neighbours in supporting roll-out financially or in kind. Although that is due to the absence of local municipal infrastructure that is available in Euroland...
Posted by creakycopperline over 6 years ago
25mbps ? By 2017. Too little too late more evidence that the bt monopoly should be brocken up. Allowed to drag it's feet for lack of competition. It's not even superfast.
Europe has faster speeds now. I'm sure gmann will post defending his beloved BT.
as for him they can do no wrong.








Posted by terry1954 over 6 years ago
Never mind 25mbps in 2015, it would be nice if I could get getter than 1.5mbps when I pay for 8mbps in 2011.
Posted by Somerset over 6 years ago
creakycopperline - what do you mean by breaking the BT monopoly? What would that mean?
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@CCL

Don't tell me you ignore the fact that BT was unable to rollout consumer fibre until OFCOM allowed it.

As I have always said the reason for the UK's poor position is the regulator and govs.

Other countries have/had monopoly telecoms and roll out worked due to supportive gov and visionary regulators. So the monopoly argument is baseless.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Same old same old from creaky. I'm not defending BT, BT have no obligation to provide anyone with broadband just like Sky, Virgin and TalkTalk, its not "up to" BT to provide any broadband services
Posted by andyboygsi over 6 years ago
if bt are that bad why don't you start your own company like rutland and roll out your own fttx network.

that way you can supply all the areas bt do not want to.

problem solved
Posted by creakycopperline over 6 years ago
well most of your satements always seem to be pro bt, other providers have to pay for access to ducts... so isn't that a monopoly? why shouldn't anyone else other than BT be allowed to provide fibre? like fujitsu. but then bt stand in the way.
they still think they run the telecoms industry.
south korean goverment backed upgrade to their telecoms infrastructure, and now they're upgrading it to 23 gbps. it's the goverment who are also compuounding the issue. by dithering about while the telecoms industry is left in the slow lane.
Posted by russianmonkey over 6 years ago
Comnut: That's a pretty racist comment. I live in Dundee actually, where there is going to be BT Infinity, currently VM and where H2O were going to roll out their network.

Also, copper is going to remain in the network for quite some time due to cost.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
creaky anyone else can provide fibre, just using their own ducts. C&W do it all over the UK for businesses.

The BT ducts aren't the only way to the streets, but.. if people want an easy path through BT ducts they have to pay, you must see that? If "someone" i.e. government wants to build ducts for universal access to anyone they can do it. BT isn't some magic company holding all the keys, its just duct space with stuff in it, any other company (like Virgin have) can do it
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@CCL

If look at most of my posts they point out that either the regulatory environment shapes BT's business plan or the viability of rollout.

If you think about it the duct thing is only a monopoly because no other ducts have been opened. So there is no choice in whose ducts you use, unlike France for example! See what I mean now about OFCOM lacking the vision of it's European cousin's? It is perpetuating a cycle of flawed options which results in the very slow progression of "competitive" fibre in the UK.
Posted by spetznaz over 6 years ago
I suppose in theory the government could force BT to allow other providers to use its lines/poles/ducts, as long as they pay a fair amount towards the maintainence costs?, is this not similar to what PIA is?, the last thing we need though is dithering around and lack of agreement which sounds like is going to happen with PIA, it needs to be forced through quickly.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
That's what PIA is spetz, apparently the costs are cheaper than in Europe but the other telco's that want to use BT ducts (mainly Virgin who won't open their own) say its not cheap enough.

I'm not sure Ofcom can force anything just look at setting prices if its seen to be unfair which will be anything but quick, investigations take forever, then there's the pricing to be agreed upon etc etc.

Or.. Virgin etc could just suck it up and pay the price which must be cheaper than digging new ducts for themselves.

Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
You've got to remember any rival will never be happy, same as if Virgin were setting prices for access to their ducts... Sky, BT, TalkTalk would also be complaining no doubt. Though.. we'll never know...
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
My main take on PIA is that the price is not dissimilar to France. Which, objectively, is the most similar economically to the UK. If they have been able to make it work with that price regime and their regulator was happy with those prices, there is no reason for operators in th UK to need cheaper access.
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Oh there's a reason, its called greed
Posted by wirelesspacman over 6 years ago
In my mind it makes a lot of sense for PIA prices not to be cheap. Afterall, if another operator gets subsidised access to BT's ducts and poles and rolls out a fibre network through/over them then the value of BT's copper network would vanish as in any real copper versus fibre battle there can only be one winner. BT would then see its access network revenue stream disappear as the only revenue for those ducts/poles would be PIA revenue.
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
themanstan: so tell me why OFCOM did not stop Virgin cable *years* ago???

'Copper legacy' ??? sorry you dont have a clue... many lines in UK are NOT copper, they are aluminum, laid in the 1900s!!! the only priorities in those days was for voice lines, so the craftsmanship was decidedly dubious... many of these have been untouched since that time, due to being 'uneconomic'... :(


russianmonkey: oooooh, sensitive!!!! LOL

and you repeat what *I* said about being limitedby cost.... :P
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Many aluminium lines? I'd say your info (guess) is still based in the 1900's.

OFCOM didn't stop Virgin because Virgin (or C&W as was) was the reason they stopped BT rolling out fibre to give cable companies like Mercury/NTL/C&W/Virgin a foothold
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@comnut

As Gman99 points out OFCOM/UKgov prevented BT rolling out fibre in the 80s so that cable companies would be able to rollout TV serivce without competition from BT.

http://crave.cnet.co.uk/gadgets/smooth-moves-towards-fibre-broadband-49298267/

And if you weren't so narrow minded, you'd realise that the term "copper legacy" which is used by majority is a generalisation for the non-fibre network that is used.

Posted by spetznaz over 6 years ago
Surely the price should be applied to using Virgin's network and any others as well as BT's then?. I really don't see the point of ofcom as they don't seem to have any real teeth or foresight.

I don't understand what ministers are doing promising 25mbit in 4 years time when they have no influence apart from throwing in a few million which wont go far.
Posted by fibrebunny over 6 years ago
Turkeys don't vote for Christmas and BT is no exception. With the very real threat to their business that the Fujitsu plan raises then you can hardly expect them to do anything other than resist reduced access pricing. No company would freely give away a monopoly without a fight.
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
themanstan: so you 'in the hood' huh?? a pity you cannot seem to qualify that with tech knowledge, just prefer nice buzzwords...

Fibre is not the 'magic' solution it seems, you will not find it in 3Ghz computers, HD displays, or even your 100Meg cable modem/switch... they all still use copper...
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@comnut

Not really, researcher at Oxford University and you?

Do you understand the meaning of hypocracy? Because you are giving the dictionary definition.
I supply references in my posts... you don't, so please "qualify" (meaning to give evidence)... quantify is not the correct word, it means provide numbers.

What is wrong with a generalised term for a non-fibre network? Please give a short explanation on why we need to be pedantic...
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
Oh and since when have I said fibre is the be all and end all... look back at my posts and quote.... because I state categorically FTTC is fine for consumer use... hence final stretch is copper... oh all right might be alu...
Posted by polemonkey over 6 years ago
@ dohnut
"'Copper legacy' ??? sorry you dont have a clue..."
Someone don't have a clue and that's you pal

"many lines in UK are NOT copper, they are alumin(i)um, laid in the 1900s!!!"
Really, aluminium laid in the 1900's. Think you'll find lead cables with .9mm gauge paper insulated copper were actually quite popular. As for aluminium: first used in the 70's due to world copper shortage.

cont'
Posted by polemonkey over 6 years ago
"the only priorities in those days was for voice lines,"
True, that's why DSL kit is designed around the cables as apposed to the other way round.

"craftsmanship was decidedly dubious..."
So you never seen a lead plumbed e-side joint? In engineering terms at least "a work of art", signed by the jointer too.

"many of these have been untouched since that time, due to being 'uneconomic'... :("
If it's not broke....
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
um you DO realize the 1900s finished only 12 years ago? :) do I really have to say that '1900s' covers almost a century, not JUST 1900!!!

IN THIS 'forum' there were replies from those in the north country, talking about old ali cable in a waterlogged field, just *twisted* together...
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
lead plumbed e-side joint? very nice for water or gas, but can the 'oxford researcher' tell me why it it not so good with the current subject?? :)


Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
"many of these have been untouched since that time, due to being 'uneconomic'... :("
If it's not broke....

ok, themanstan, what does your oxford education say about HF distribution through oxidized, waterlogged, multicore cable, including major pulse interference, due to no screening at all??

I only wish it WAS as simple as 'fixing a connection'... :P
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
@Fibrebunny
You mention "very real threat to their usiness that the Fujitsu plan raises". You do realise that this "business plan" currently only applies to around 5 million homes in the final third?

Also, there is no evidence to date that the parent company has actually made the necessary funds available to the UK subsidiary, so it may be yet another example of vapourware I'm afraid.
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
@Comnut
You suggest that we should mirror the situation in the US. Most of the US only has a very limited choice of broadband suppliers, lacking competition due to the vertical integration of the various players.

Many people in the UK seem to think that the US market is advanced but, in large parts, it is not. Check some of the various league tables and you will realise that the average performance is not great, despite a lot of PR being generated by some small pockets of innovation.
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
"ok, themanstan, what does your oxford education say about HF distribution through oxidized, waterlogged, multicore cable, including major pulse interference, due to no screening at all??"

What does this have to do with what we've been discussing?

I'm not an expert in this field and neither are you, otherwise you'd have said you're a communications engineer or the like.

And you would have said all electrical items have copper and the world would fail without it. And certainly wouldn't have said only "3Ghz PCs", all PCs fit that bill.
Posted by wirelesspacman over 6 years ago
Sorry, but 1900s implies 1900 to 1909 in the same way as 1960s implies 1960 to 1969.
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
wirelesspacman: and can you direct me to the place this is quoted as standard???
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
themanstan:
"What does this have to do with what we've been discussing?"

well if you dont know.. what is your qualification???
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
themanstan:
and I think any engineer would be ROFL now... they would understand what I said...
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
New_Londoner:
are you in US?? other may wish to read this report from 2009, about the 'generally acceptable' broadband and the low cap... I am sure UK guys will be a bit surprised..
(dont worry, the first para says most... )
http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,2845,2346817,00.asp

Posted by Bob_s2 over 6 years ago
The last thing that wants to happen with the government funding is to give it to BT. They have dragged their feet for far too long.
I would like to see the bulk of the money going to the new Open Network Consortium. This gives a real chance for competition to BT to be introduced into areas that don’t have cable. At present in areas without Cable you are pretty much dependent on BT. Even LLU uses a very considerable part of the BT network. The other benefit of the consortium is that they will deploy FTTH in all but the most rural areas
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
Bob, well my view rather just "don't give it to BT is" give it to the provider that can do the most with it. If it comes down to one provider being able to give fibre access to 3 or 4 million people with the £'s vs another provider being able to provide access via FTTC or Satellite etc for say 10-15 million people then it should IMO go to the provider than can do the most with it

"The other benefit of the consortium is that they will deploy FTTH in all but the most rural areas" those are big words I've not seen in print anywhere else!
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@Comnut

I'm sure an engineer would... but you're not one.

And if you read my post instead of misinterpreting as you seem to do with most posts. I said I worked there... doesn't say i'm studying there.

We we're discussing accuracy of statements... which you seem to be ignoring.

And I don't know anyone who needs to quote a whole century to say when something was installed. ROFL... and you we're the one saying I was carp for generalising... hypocracy again.
Most alu was installed in the 70s when alu was cheaper than copper.
Posted by rkimber over 6 years ago
Presumably this means 90% of England?
Posted by Somerset over 6 years ago
@rkimber - read again - 90% of the UK
Posted by heritage80 over 6 years ago
I like many broadband users am living with an 'up-to' Network. This is 'up-to 24mbps' in my case. My line speed with TalkTalk very rarely gets to 3mbps. Rest assured other than ripping out the line in its entirety and replacing will it make any difference (or so I believe). I await the next family of up-to!!!!
Posted by GMAN99 over 6 years ago
heritage, I firmly believe "up to" is here to stay, even with FTTP because no residential ISP will provide you with your full Mbps 24/7 365 days a year, that is what business connections pay big bucks for, not cheap residential connections.

The "up to" will be present to cover things like peak time congestion, traffic shaping etc etc.

So I think the term will always be there but on FTTC/FTTP you should certainly be closer to hitting that advertised speed than what ADSL users get now
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
themanstan: you just said you were a researcher, no subject... instead of finding fault and being petty, how about telling us what YOUR qualifications are ???
I would rather not waste my time on what my 30 years experience is, speak up and prove YOUR knowledge...
Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
heritage80: the main thing about TalkTalk is that it is **cheap** - therefore it is oversubscribed, and rarely full speed... I recommend trying one of the less popular ISPs (eg Zen) here, first checking the reviews there...
http://www.ispreview.co.uk/review/top10.php

Posted by comnut over 6 years ago
GMAN99: too right, even when we get gigabit lines, there will always be 'made to a price' lines, and those who persist in d/l'ing gigs of data...
Even my uni network feels the strain - if I have a massive update to do, it is worth getting in a hour early, so it can be done quickly without it grinding to a halt at 9, when they all logon...
Posted by Bob_s2 over 6 years ago
With Fibre you should get pretty near to the speed you pay for. It cannot be guaranted but it would not be far off.

The Up To is a cop out by ISP's and very misleading If you buy a car and it says up tp 70mph it means it is capable of reaching 70mph.

With ISP's up to in most cases you well never get anywhere near the upto speed

ISP's should sell it at the typical speed you are likely to get and not a fictitious speed
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
@Bob
The problem with typical speed is that it is a meaningless phrase. Also, with fibre you should get a sync speed that equals that of the service you've paid for, whether the throughput is any better than ADSL depends on contention, backhaul etc.

Far better if the emphasis moved away from sync speed and on to throughput IMHO. If in doubt, look at the experience of many cable customers at present who are complaining of lousy throughput despite the campaign ironically being run by Virgin to stop the con on speed.
Posted by AndrueC over 6 years ago
@Bob_s2:"The Up To is a cop out by ISP's and very misleading If you buy a car and it says up tp 70mph it means it is capable of reaching 70mph." But not necessarily 6pm on the M25 nor when climbing a steep hill.

In addition if you drive a vehicle at its top speed indefinitely the engine and/or transmission is likely to suffer premature failure.

A fibre link should connect at its maximum speed, yes, but there will always be network congestion and throughput limitations.
Posted by AndrueC over 6 years ago
(cont'd) in fact if the current limits on the local loop are reduced we can expect a lot more pressure on the existing backhaul, core network and transits.

Fibre local loop is not going to suddenly free us from constraint. Quite the opposite I think. I reckon charging by usage will come back in a big way. It'll be too easy otherwise for people to swamp the ISP's network.
Posted by New_Londoner over 6 years ago
@AndrewC
Agree with your general point above. IMHO the focus will simply move to other pinch points in teh network, where the costs to address the issues become ever more expensive - backhaul, then transatlantic pipes etc.

Also, content providers may find that their server farms come under huge pressure, needing more bandwidth for connections as well as more server capacity etc. All of which can be expensive, may not be done - unless the content is paid for.

It may be a case of "be careful what you wish for"!
Posted by themanstan over 6 years ago
@comnut

Doctorate Medical Sciences...

I believe that you started the petty jibes with RussianMonkey and you obviously hurt his feelings. I offered myself as an alternative target... and yes I did start fault finding, but lets say it wasn't exactly challenging.
And a competent individual would have given a concise and lucid explanation of your "problem"... instead we got ROFL...
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