Ofcom has announced that a majority of homes and businesses around the UK now have access to ultrafast broadband (>300Mbit/s), according to the regulator’s Our Connected Nations report. Ofcom also reported that full-fibre broadband was also now available in around 7% of premises following commercial roll-outs of FTTP (Fibre-to-the-premises) by BT, Virgin Media, and KCOM.
Discussing the availability of ultrafast broadband, Ofcom said:
“Ultrafast broadband is now available to the majority of UK properties for the first time. Ultrafast broadband in the UK has increased from 49% to 53%, a reflection of both continued deployment of cable broadband as well as the increasing pace of full fibre deployments across the UK by a number of providers, as noted above.”
Ofcom has another category of broadband called superfast broadband which is defined as download speeds of 30Mbit/s and above. It said the number of premises with superfast broadband remained relatively stable rising by 1% this year to 95% of the UK.
One of the big problems the UK has faced is getting those out in the sticks connected to the internet with a fast broadband connection. It said that 619,000 premises still do not have access to decent broadband which it defines as having a download speed of at least 10Mbit/s and an upload speed of at least 1Mbit/s.
The governments around the UK have various projects underway which plan to expand the reach of superfast broadband. For example, the UK government has allocated £200 million to pilot innovative ways to deploy fibre in rural areas, while the Welsh government has announced £13 million aimed at connecting up 16,000 premises in North Wales, South West Wales, and the Valleys. Scotland and Northern Ireland also have projects which aim to get people more connected.