Cabinet Century for Shropshire but more needed
The BDUK projects are often criticised project both in terms of whether it will deliver and also over the time scales involved, so it was interesting to look at our speed test data for the county of Shropshire, which if we just looked at averages we would say that the 100 cabinets across the county have made no difference.
The project to bring superfast broadband to 93% of premises is a massive undertaking, so milestones like the 100th cabinet to go live in Shropshire is an important one. Our speeds test over the last 18 months in the county is shown below.
|Period||Median Download||Median Upload||Download Speed of Top 25%||%'age of Superfast Tests||%'age of Tests below 2 Mbps|
|Q1 2013||6.1 Mbps||0.53 Mbps||11.4 Mbps||4.2%||21%|
|Q2 2013||4.8 Mbps||0.62 Mbps||12.9 Mbps||8.1%||23.7%|
|Q3 2013||5 Mbps||0.53 Mbps||10.8 Mbps||8%||23.6%|
|Q4 2013||6.4 Mbps||0.69 Mbps||15 Mbps||10.4%||19.6%|
|Q1 2014||5.9 Mbps||0.66 Mbps||16 Mbps||13%||15.7%|
|Q2 2014||6.4 Mbps||0.77 Mbps||17.7 Mbps||14.5%||19.4%|
|Jul/Aug 2014||5.9 Mbps||0.72 Mbps||15.2 Mbps||12.6%||20.2%|
As you can see the median results are almost unchanged, but there are signs of more superfast services appearing and hopefully in the next few quarters we might see some dramatic changes in the median as cabinet based services become more widely available. Our best estimate for fibre based coverage of the county in mid September was 52%, with 85% of those people able to get super fast broadband (30 Mbps or faster) and 1% able to order an FTTP based service. The figures exclude Telford and Wrekin that is a council in its own right and has a much higher median of 19.3 Mbps.
The scale of the work needed is clearly illustrated by these figures and also why there are so many voices from places like Shropshire complaining of slow speeds still.