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Broadband promises - public does not believe the politicians
Wednesday 21 November 2012 11:00:13 by Andrew Ferguson

Back in June 2009 when the Digital Britain report was originally published there was a sense of optimism for broadband, but while great strides have been made it seems the public still need lots of convincing. In our most recent poll we asked our visitors to vote on whether they think Labour would have actually met its 2012 deadline for 2 Mbps to be available to virtually all households in the UK.

Poll Results: Would Labour have met its 2012 USC deadline?
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The above chart is based on over 1,400 responses to the poll, and it clearly shows that the weight of opinion is that if Labour had won the 2010 General Election, people believe they would not have met the 2012 target (74% saying they would have failed to meet the target, and only 16% believing they would).

Poll Results: Will current coalition deliver USC by 2015?
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The weight of pessimism amongst public is revealed when asked about the current 2015 target for the USC, that is being run by the BDUK which was originally formed by the Labour Government and has had its goals re-arranged by the current coalition. The coalition has only 14% of those responding believing the 2015 2 Mbps target will be met, and that is with the 90% of UK households been able to access broadband at 2 Mbps (satellite services are excluded from this statistic), which is actually less than the 16% who thought Labour would actually deliver.

Poll Results: What is more important, basic broadband or superfast broadband?
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The final question in the poll, reveals a much more divided opinion with the balance going towards superfast broadband (36%) being the most important goal from the current BDUK projects (34% believe basic and superfast are of equal importance, 28% favour the basic broadband target as the most important). There have been numerous reports calling for ubiquity of broadband access to be the main goal for any broadband projects, but this final question shows that while 28% feel that way, superfast services, or the current dual-focus approach are preferred.

Beyond the economic situation in the UK, perhaps the biggest reason behind the pessimism is that people have heard of better broadband coming to the final third of the UK for three years, yet very few have seen any actual evidence of this happening. Now the BDUK has the blanket EU State Aid Approval we may see projects picking up pace. We also need those responsible for projects to stop posing in front of tractors, or talking of rural broadband, the projects cross the boundaries between green fields and views of other cloned housing.


Posted by camieabz over 4 years ago
So splitting the 'equal importance' between the two, we get: Superfast 53% Basic 45% (or is it 70% / 62% ?)

Do you have any rollout/coverage data back there to compare to the polling data?

I wonder if folk are caring less for the super part, just as long as they get a stable, reliable connection which can do the majority of tasks?
Posted by andrew (Favicon staff member) over 4 years ago
If my to-do list was not longer than a roll of sellotape I could do something.
Posted by otester over 4 years ago
We need to roll back regulations/taxes which prevent us from having super fast broadband FOR ALL.
Posted by leexgx over 4 years ago
i was between superfast broadband and basic broadband (5mb+, 2mb is to low)

superfast broadband for all is what I prefer but that's really wishful and most likely impractical for an small 5-10% of the uk (but bt seem to be happy to let 30% no have good broadband speeds)
i just think all Cabs where possible (as BT have an thing with Skiping cabs leaving bunch of houses stuck on 0.5mb or lower BB) should be upgraded to FTTC

Posted by techguy over 4 years ago
No one really believes a politician's comment on any subject do they?

And with central government's woeful record on IT projects I'd be even less inclined to believe this.

They usually don't have a firm grasp on the technicalities of what they are talking about and are just jumping on the bandwagon of a popular subject (or that their advisers have told them is popular)
Posted by WWWombat over 4 years ago
Good job central government isn't actually managing an IT project here then, isn't it? Only pumping money into one managed by someone else.

For me, we need both components right now - partly to get FTTC as far out there as possible, and partly to ensure that no man is left behind.

The *next* 3 years can focus on SFBB for the final 10%.
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