Join us at TNW Conference 2022 for insights into the future of tech →

The heart of tech

This article was published on December 6, 2010

    UK Government: Superfast broadband for all by 2015

    UK Government:  Superfast broadband for all by 2015
    Fraser Smith
    Story by

    Fraser Smith

    Fraser Smith is an IT consultant based in Shanghai, China. He has over 15 years experience in the media industry working with many major ne Fraser Smith is an IT consultant based in Shanghai, China. He has over 15 years experience in the media industry working with many major news publishers. He is also co-owner and editor of edexpat.com the educational resource for international families, teachers and schools. You can contact Fraser via Twitter by following @FrasSmith.

    The British government is set to reveal plans to bring high speed broadband connectivity to most communities in the UK by 2015.  The initiative will be privately funded for about two thirds of the population, but, rural communities will be publicly funded to build digital fibre optic hubs.

    While the government does not define what ‘superfast’ means, it is commonly accepted that 24Mbps is considered the baseline.

    UK Culture Secretary, Jeremy Hunt says the project will give the country Europe’s best broadband network by 2015 and will be central to economic growth and the delivery of future public services, dependent on quick, reliable access to the internet.

    Mr Hunt is due to reveal the plans in a speech at Microsoft’s London headquarters.

    The £830 million project will draw funds from the BBC license fee and aims to build a digital hub at the centre of every community.  Of the £830 million, £50 million has been set aside for trials that will run alongside existing trials in North Yorkshire, Herefordshire, Cumbria and the Highlands and Islands.

    The use of the BBC Television license fee will undoubtedly raise a few eyebrows.  Many of the UK’s internet service providers have been unhappy at the bandwidth requirements for the BBC’s popular iPlayer TV catch-up service and have been calling on the BBC to provide more funding to support infrastructure upgrades.  It seems that the government may have listened to their pleas.

    The previous UK government promised a minimum of 2Mbps connection by 2012.  With this announcement, the coalition is certainly upping the ante.