More speed increases...in North America
Broadband Reports has details of the latest round in speed increases in the US. Where cable users look set to see a 6Mbps/0.5Mbps package for around $65-$85 (£38-£50) per month.
The UK consumer manages around 3Mbps from Telewest for £50, and 4Mbps from Bulldog for £30/month. Though while Bulldogs price looks good, coverage is the big issue, since it is only available in Central London.
The UK currently looks set to meet its coverage targets in 2005, but we are still two or three years behind many other leading nations with regards to speed and variety of services on offer. As the US providers are finding, the need for more upstream at 0.5Mbps and 0.75Mbps is growing, people now upload a lot more content that four years ago, and that is even if you ignore Peer to Peer applications. Services like VoIP and sharing digital photographs all benefit from higher upstream.
BT Wholesale is moving much more towards 1Mbps as the average connection speed, but ideally it would be nice to see 4Mbps options appearing inside 12 months, and higher upstream speeds. Who knows with some effort now in 2 years time the UK could have the best coverage of broadband and some of the best packages too.