Monday, March 08, 2010

High Speed Broadband - UK Failure to Launch

I was thinking again about the Google'isation of the world, which mostly involves Google giving people stuff that they want for free - and renting their eyeballs out to all comers.  I came back to Google City, or what was once called Topeka, Kansas.   Google are planning to roll out a a Gigabit Fiber Network for 50,000 homes somewhere in the US - see previous post.

Compare this with the Netherlands and the UK;

In 2003 the City of Amsterdam funded a pilot fibre network to cover 40,000 homes in May 2009 The Amsterdam Fiber Network was expanded to 150,000 homes & businesses in the City.  The Dutch Minister responsible for information stating that "...high speed (Gigabit) Internet was a necessity and should be open for all".  City of Amsterdam paid for the infrastructure and now makes a profit leasing it to the private sector.

In the UK a vague target of 2mb for all by 2012 set out in the Digital Britain Report is made laughable by no ideas for funding other than a £6 ($10) a year tax on phone lines which they would probably give to BT and will most likely drop as the UK elections loom over a stricken and debt-riven nation. 

Hold this in your mind: the UK Gov' considers 10Mbps Broadband to be "Superfast' This short example shows just how far away Digital Britain really is, and how that impacts on the economy.

We have small sub-office just North of Cambridge we decided to run a Business Broadband line in and use it for long term storage and Disaster Recovery.  Despite being just 3 miles from a fiber enabled exchange the best speeds achievable were 468Kbps - which BT informed us was above 440Kbps and wa therefore an acceptable speed for a Business Broadband service - On which planet is that speed acceptable??

Come Google and rain down your love on Cambridge - I am sure we can name a College after you!!

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